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Dr Rina Ariga

Extraordinary Junior Research Fellow in Pathology

NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer in Cardiovascular Medicine

Introduction

I went to school at the local comprehensive (Glossopdale Community College, Glossop, Derbyshire) and then studied Medicine at Imperial College, London where I was awarded the St Mary’s Medical School Entrance Scholarship, the Harry Barkley Prize, and Distinctions. As a junior doctor, I trained at Charing Cross, Chelsea and Westminster, Hammersmith and Royal Brompton Hospital. I had completed three years of Cardiology specialisation on the Bart’s London rotation, when I was awarded a British Heart Foundation Clinical Research Training Fellowship to complete a doctorate in Cardiovascular Medicine at Oxford. During my doctorate, I was the Junior Dean at Exeter College, Oxford. I am now a NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer and Specialist Registrar in Cardiology, based at John Radcliffe Hospital.

Teaching

I supervise and teach clinical students during their Special Study Module in Cardiology and provide bedside teaching to junior doctors undertaking postgraduate membership exams. I previously served as a clinical tutor at St Hilda’s College, Oxford. I also co-supervise MSc and DPhil students.

Research

I am interested in using computational approaches in cardiovascular disease to integrate multivariate data from diagnostic electrocardiogram, imaging, blood and genetic tests to improve our understanding of pathophysiology. In my doctoral research, I imaged heart muscle disarray, a microstructural abnormality which underlies sudden cardiac death in Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM; the most common inherited heart disease), where no non-invasive in vivo technique exists for patients. I also collaborated with Computer Science, and applied machine learning and computational simulation to integrate the electrocardiogram and imaging to detect subtle electrical changes indicative of such underlying defects. My aim is to create a unified multimodal model of disease to advance our mechanistic understanding, improve patient risk assessment, and guide treatments.