Working with the Human Cell Atlas project
Project researcher: James Charlesworth, Academic Foundation Programme
During James’s AFP he worked on the human shoulder joint as part of the Human Cell Atlas (HCA) project. The HCA is a large, multi-national collaboration looking to establish the ‘normal’ cellular make-up of every tissue or system of the human body.
The Human Joint Atlas, headed by Professor Chris Buckley, falls within the HCA. It seeks to establish and explore the cellular development and makeup of every joint from embryogenesis into adulthood. James’s work with the project worked on the human shoulder joint, with shoulder capsule tissue (which encases the shoulder joint). James was supervised by Professor Stephanie Dakin at the Botnar research centre. Professor Dakin has established protocols for assaying shoulder capsular tissue by quadruple immunohistochemistry and digesting the tissue for flow cytometry and genetic analyses. As part of the HCA, they worked on developing the digestion technique for single-cell RNA sequencing and validating the findings at the level of the tissue by histology and flow cytometry.
After his lab work, he worked with Dr Akhila Kaviryani, Consultant Paediatric Rheumatologist, on publishing clinical cases of patients receiving unique treatments. He used this experience and training to write up several paediatric cases during his FY2 paediatric placement.