Edinburgh Research Explorer

Jess Ivy

Research Fellow

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My research in a nutshell

I am interested in glucocorticoid signaling and its wide-ranging effects particularly on cardiovascular disease risk. 




1. Glucocorticoid receptor in the early life programming of cardiac resilience (Current)

The heart is one of the first organs in which the glucocorticoid receptor is expressed. The number of heart cells (cardiomyocytes) you have is determined in late development and this is set for life.  In this project we explore the role that glucocorticoid signaling has on cardiomyocyte endowment and in the maturation of these heart cells.  


 2. Glucocorticoid signaling and blood pressure rhythm

Molecular clocks exist in just about every cell in the human body; this allows predictive adaptations to our environment of light/dark. Blood pressure also follows a cyclical pattern, being at least 10% higher during the active hours than at rest. An absence of a decrease in resting BP is called non-dipping and is associated with increased cardiovascular risk. Glucocorticoids can evoke non-dipping blood pressure. This project aims to investigate the mechanisms of glucocorticoid-induced non-dipping blood pressure.  


I would like to acknowledge the Society for Endocrinology for Summer Studentship funding to investigate “The effect of glucocorticoid signaling on the binucleation and proliferation of cardiomyocytes”. 


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