Edinburgh Research Explorer

Lenny Nelson

(Former employee or visitor)

Profile photo

Willingness to take PhD students: Yes

Enquiries welcome from candidates with external funding.


Senior researcher in biological engineering at the Institute for Bioengineering at the University of Edinburgh. Born in Edinburgh, I completed a BSc (Honours) in Physiology at the University of Edinburgh in 1990. After obtaining a Diploma in Education and teaching chemistry and biology, I pursued a research career by completing a PhD in 2002 at the University of Edinburgh Faculty of Medicine (Hepatology) in the Liver Cell Biology Laboratory, working on liver tissue engineering approaches towards the development of bioartificial liver systems. Currently, my research is focused on developing human liver tissue (two/three-dimensional) organotypic models, mechanisms underlying liver disease utilizing in vitro human disease models (drug-induced liver injury; fatty liver disease; cholangiocarcinoma), study of the liver–brain axis in Alzheimer’s disease, as well as synthetic biological engineering approaches for pharmaceutical applications.

Collaborative Activity

CURRENT GRANTS: 1. EPSRC IAA Grant: Synthetic Biological Engineering of human hepatic HepaRG cells; [2018-2019]; £161,134; LJ Nelson; A Elfick 2. AMMF (UK): A Novel Therapeutic Approach for Cholangiocarcinoma; £67,000 [2018-2020]; LJ Nelson, M Avila, J Cubero. 3. H2020 COST Action CA171120: Prospective Drug-induced Liver Injury Network [2018-2022]; Management Committee; WG3 Co-Leader. RECENT PROJECTS: Human Liver Models for Drug Apps: 1. Nanopatterned Human Liver BioChips for Drug Hepatotoxicity Screening [BBSRC; UK]. 2. Human hepatic HepaRG cell-based toxicological platform/ impedance biosensing [SCRM; Biopredic] Tissue Engineering: i. 3D Human Liver Organoids [CSO award, UK]. ii. Non-invasive 3D hepatotoxicity optical assays [SCRM, UoE] iii. 2D-3D HepaRG-NAFLD models of liver disease.

ID: 649004