Back to top anchor

Looking Skin Deep

60 months
Approved budget:
Professor Anthony Phillips
Professor Anthony Hickey
Dr Peter Russell
Dr Jules Devaux
Dr Jiwon Hong
Professor John Windsor
Health issue:
Inflammatory and immune system
Proposal type:
Explorer Grant
Lay summary
Deep to the skin surface is a network of blood capillaries that transport blood and nutrients to the skin and take waste away. Alongside the capillaries are lymphatic vessels that carry any excess interstitial fluid from around cells that was not picked up by the capillaries and venules. The lymphatics comprise a network of contractile conduits that are independent of the blood vasculature. Maintaining a balance between the amount of fluid coming into a tissue and leaving keeps the tissues in an optimal state. However, this process can become deranged and the tissues become overloaded with fluid, a state known as oedema. This derangement can be due to either overly leaky capillaries or lymphatics that are not functioning. The different causes are treated by different interventions. Currently there is no way to assess easily lymphatic function. We propose a new measurement system to enable lymphatic functional assessment at the bedside.