Keywords: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM); cardiovascular disease (CVD); serum amyloid A (SAA); high density lipoprotein (HDL)
Kayleigh graduated from the University of Manchester with a BSc in Pharmacology (2011) and a MRes in Cardiovascular Health and Disease (2012). She then began a PhD in 2014 at the Centre for Public Health, Queen’s University Belfast under the supervision of Dr Jane McEneny and Dr Gareth McKay, and recently Professor Peter Maxwell. SAA is a protein hypothesized to contribute to HDL dysfunction and atherosclerosis development. Kayleigh’s doctoral work will examine the correlation of SAA levels in patients with T2DM and CVD and investigate the effects of SAA on proteins/enzymes known to affect HDL function. Further to this, Kayleigh will undertake genetic evaluation of the 4 SAA genes to detect variants that may influence the expression of the SAA protein and determination of this influence in the context of T2DM and CVD will be investigated. With the prevalence of diabetes rising and therefore the complications associated with diabetes there is increasing need for early detection or prevention. Therefore the identification of potential biomarkers, such as SAA, could help to further enhance the diabetic screening programme and therefore would benefit those living with diabetes as well as those at risk.