The Guy Foundation is pleased to announce it has awarded a PhD studentship award to Ifigeneia Kalampouka at the University of Westminster’s Research Centre for Optimal Health. While the Foundation ordinarily directs its funding to established researchers, Ifigeneia Kalampouka is part of a team of Guy Foundation-funded researchers led by Professor Jimmy Bell, who are investigating the role that biophotons – spontaneous ultraweak emission of light by biological tissue – play in cellular communication.
Ifigeneia Kalampouka will expand on this research in her PhD, by investigating how biophoton emission is related to cellular senescence. Senescence occurs when cells age or undergo stress, which halts cell division. Mitochondrial dysfunction has also been implicated in cellular senescence. As well as investigating novel cellular communication pathways it is hoped that potential non- invasive methodologies of assessing mitochondria during cellular senescence will also be explored.
Both Ifigeneia Kalampouka and her supervisor, Professor Louise Thomas, have expressed their gratitude. Professor Thomas said: “Thank you to The Guy Foundation for their generous funding of this exciting research that will help our understanding of how mitochondria communicate using photons. It may inform the development of diagnostic tools for cellular health, and help us to better understand the ageing process”.
Professor Geoffrey Guy, Founder and Chairman of The Guy Foundation, has long been interested in the role that mitochondrial bioenergetics might play in disease and ageing. He commented: “The Foundation is pleased to support new and paradigm-shifting research. We are glad to welcome Ifigeneia into The Guy Foundation faculty and wish her every success with her research”.