Addressing unmet clinical needs in the repair and rehabilitation of non-union fractures PhD

Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering
Entry requirements:
3 years
6 years
Reference number:
Start date:
01 October 2018
UK/EU fees:
International fees:
Application deadline:
09 March 2018



in the UK for research quality

REF 2014


in the UK for Mechanical Engineering

The Complete University Guide 2018


of 2 Queen's Anniversary Prizes


Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014) and an outstanding 66% of the work of Loughborough’s academic staff who were eligible to be submitted to the REF was judged as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’, compared to a national average figure of 43%.

In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career. 

Project detail

A non-union is a broken bone that fails to heal. These result from both civilian and military injuries and lead to pain, suffering and loss of dignity. Recent study (Geris et al 2010) suggested that mechanical, chemical and biological factors should all be present at the right time and right place in order for fractures to unite successfully. However, the exact mechanisms which disrupt this process, resulting in non-union, are still largely unknown, especially at the micro and tissue levels. Therefore, understanding the regulatory factors and mechanisms that result in ossification and remodelling of the haematoma/callus at different length-scales following a fracture could help to unlock new strategies to treat non-union. It is well known that mechanical stimuli alter the local stress/strain conditions at the fracture site and affect both angiogenesis and osteogenesis. Yet, the underpinning mechanisms which regulate tissue angiogenesis and the subsequent mineralisation process and how these processes interact to promote, or inhibit tissue ossification are still not known.

In this project, the successful candidate will be able to join a multi-disciplinary research team including leading engineers and clinicians within the UNIFY network to help the development of a novel in silico model to predict spatio-temporal evolutions of fracture union processes considering material heterogeneity and biomechanical regulatory factors. It is expected that the candidate will participate in international research collaboration with partners in Ireland, Switzerland, USA and Australia. 


Primary supervisor: Dr Simin Li

Secondary supervisor: TBC

Find out more

For further project details email Dr Simin Li or register your interest and ask us a question.

To find out more about the School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering, please visit our website.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in Engineering, Physics, Mathematical Sciences or a related subject.

A relevant Master’s degree and/or experience in one or more of the following will be an advantage: Mechanical Engineering, Continuum Mechanics, Computer Science, Materials Science, Biomedical Engineering and Computational Biology.

All students must also meet the minimum English Language requirements.

Fees and funding


Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. University fees and charges can be paid in advance and there are several methods of payment, including online payments and payment by instalment. Special arrangements are made for payments by part-time students.

This is an open call for candidates who are sponsored or who have their own funding. If you do not have funding, you may still apply, however Institutional funding is not guaranteed. Outstanding candidates (UK/EU/International) without funding will be considered for funding opportunities which may become available in the School.

How to apply

All applications should be made online. Under programme name select Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering. Please quote reference number: SL3UF2018