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Dr Xuming Zhang

Job Title
Associate Professor
Department
Life Sciences
Research Interests

Plain English:

Acute pain warns us of danger allowing us to initiate protective behaviours and is thus beneficial. However, chronic and sustained pain is debilitating and harmful to health. It has become one of the most common medical conditions associated with many diseases such as arthritis, cancer and diabetes. We aim to understand how pain signals are generated and then transmitted to the brain, and how it is maintained for a long period with a view to devising novel therapies for a better treatment of chronic pain.

Technical Summary:

We are interested in the molecular and cellular mechanisms of acute and chronic pain. Acute pain arises from the activation of nociceptors and generation of action potentials. They are then transmitted to the central nervous system through afferent nerve fibres. However, this pain pathway is subjected to alteration and remoulding under disease conditions such as inflammation, nerve injury and chronic arthritis leading to chronic pain.

We investigate ion channels such as TRP channels and voltage-gated Na+ channels responsible for the generation and transmission of pain signals. We also examine the signalling molecules critical to remoulding of the pain pathway. Our ambitions are to identify the targets critical to chronic pain facilitating the development of efficacious analgesics.

Biography

I obtained my Ph.D degree at Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China, in 2001. I then did my postdoctoral training at the University of Cambridge followed by lectureship first at the University of Aberdeen and then at Aston University. I joined the University of Warwick in 2022.

Member of IASP (International Association for the Study of Pain)

Member of BNA (British Neuroscience Association)

Research Themes:

Biomedical Science