Anusha Seneviratne is a Research Associate in the Macrophage Differentiation Group, Vascular Sciences Division, National Heart and Lung Institute.
Dr Seneviratne graduated with a BSc in Biomedical Sciences from Imperial College London. She was then awarded a 4 year MRes/PhD studentship by the British Heart Foundation Centre of Research Excellence at Imperial College, where under the supervision of Prof. Claudia Monaco at the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology and Prof. Rob Krams in the Department of Bioengineering, she studied the influence of shear stress and the IRF5 transcription factor on macrophage polarisation, inflammation and the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, focusing on the development of 'vulnerable' atherosclerotic plaques, which are associated with acute cardiovascular events.
Dr Seneviratne is now based in the Macrophage Differentiation group under the supervision of Dr Joseph Boyle. Previously Dr Boyle identified that intraplaque haemorrhage induces an ATF1-driven transcriptional pathway, generating an anti-inflammatory 'Mhem' macrophage phenotype with more efficient iron and cholesterol recycling properties. Dr Boyle also found that the anti-diabetic agent Metformin induces the Mhem phenotype via AMPK. Dr Seneviratne is now working with Dr Boyle to further characterise the ATF1-AMPK pathway in Mhem macrophages and investigate whether Metformin could potentially protect against atherosclerotic disease.
et al., 2015, Low shear stress induces M1 macrophage polarization in murine thin-cap atherosclerotic plaques, Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, Vol:89, ISSN:0022-2828, Pages:168-172
et al., 2013, Biomechanical factors and macrophages in plaque stability, Cardiovascular Research, Vol:99, ISSN:0008-6363, Pages:284-293