Barts & The London - Institute of Dentistry

Dr Eleni Hagi-Pavli, BSc (Hons), PhD

Eleni

Senior Lecturer in Oral Sciences

Email: e.hagi-pavli@qmul.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 20 7882 7141
Room Number: Blizard Building

Profile

Dr Eleni Hagi-Pavli completed her undergraduate study at the University of Birmingham with a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry and a PhD from Barts and the Royal London Medical and Dental School in 1996 from the Department of Chemical Pathology. Her thesis title was ‘Designing immunogens for the generation of antibodies that catalyse the hydrolysis of cocaine’ where she was searching for an antidote for cocaine poisoning in the field of catalytic antibodies.. Her post-doctoral training is exclusively in the field of Dentistry where she has been able to develop her research expertise and interest in the area of mucosal biology.  Dr Hagi-Pavli has investigated the oral mucosa’s response to different stimuli by studying the signaling mechanisms by which adhesion molecules and cytokines are induced by vasoactive peptides as well as the oral mucosa’s response to small organic and inorganic molecules found in oral healthcare products. She has worked with Professor David Williams and Dr Alan Cruchley on collaborative studies with Unilever and more recently and prior to her appointment as lecturer with GlaxoSmithKline. During her post-doctoral studies she has won Travel Fellowships from the Wellcome Trust and the Endocrinology Society to visit the University of Pennsylvania Dental School where she researched the role of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in oral homeostasis and where her interest in salivary growth factors began and still continues. She has recently been appointed to the position of ‘Non-clinical lecturer in Oral Sciences’.

Teaching

Achievements in education

I have been managing and successfully leading Clinical Dental Postgraduate (PG) courses for over 12 years.

I was awarded a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA) in 2017 having achieved Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) in 2015 and previous to that associate fellowship having completed a Certificate in Learning and teaching (CILT) in Medical and Dental Education in 2008.

I was shortlisted for the Queen Mary Student Union (QMSU) Education Awards in 2014 for the ‘Postgraduate Supervisor of the Year Award’ and nominated for the Drapers Awards for Excellence in teaching in 2009.

I am currently supervising 2 PhD students but I have had 3 PhD students successfully graduate with all students submitting on time. I have successfully supervised 14 MSc students yielding both publications and high success rates with almost all of my Masters students achieving either Distinction or Merit grades.

Having coordinated, led and taught on the Postgraduate Diploma in Dental Clinical Sciences courses for 9 years, I more recently developed the MSc in Dental Science for Clinical Practice (DSCP) for overseas dentists wishing to orientate themselves into UK dentistry. I have been the course Director for the MSc DSCP since its launch in 2014.

I teach on 3 Modules and lead the research project module on the MSc in Experimental Oral Pathology course as well as supervise MSc research projects (1-2 per year). Recently, I have taken on the role of Educational Supervisor for the QM Model Year 1 BDS. I also, supervise BDS Year 3 SSC project students (between 1-4 students per year) from October-March and School of Biological & Chemical Sciences BSc Biomedical Sciences Project students (1-2 per year).

I have been a member of the Dentistry Taught Postgraduate Programmes committee since 2008 and the Dental Graduate Studies Committee since 2015.


 

Research

Research Interests:

Dr Hagi-Pavli’s research interests include looking at the differences that can be found between salivary growth factors such as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and epidermal growth factor (EGF) in patients with inflammatory mucosal disease in particular patients with Behcet’s disease who exhibit delayed oral ulcer healing. Dr Hagi-Pavli has presented this work both nationally and internationally. She is also involved in profiling the saliva of patients with differing inflammatory mucosal disease so that one may be able to have at hand a non-invasive and relatively inexpensive method by which patients may be screened at the same time for Behcet’s, Crohns, Sjogrens and other chronic diseases and therefore more easily diagnosed.  In collaboration with Professor Farida Fortune she has become involved research which includes basic biology and clinical oral research in investigating mucosal inflammation following underlying chronic disease situations such as Behcet’s, Crohns Disease, Lichen planus and Erytheme Multiforme. The aim of this work is to understand how acute inflammation is opposed and homeostasis restored in chronic disease. More recently she has been involved in the development of a technique called Scattering Attenuation Microscopy (SAM) with Professor Farida Fortune, Dr Pete Tomlins and Dr Oluyori Adegun that will be used for the early detection of oral cancer.

Dr Hagi-Pavli’s research is positioned within the Infection, Immunity and Inflammation and Oral cancer research groups.

Dr Hagi-Pavli received her Certificate in Learning and Teaching (CILT) in Medical and Dental Education in 2008 and has been nominated for a Drapers’ Award for Excellence in Teaching. She co-ordinates and teaches on the postgraduate Diploma in Dental Clinical Sciences for internationally qualified dentists but  also teaches and supervises research projects on the MSc in Experimental Oral Pathology (Oral Sciences).  She currently supervises three PhD students.

Real achievements in research

My research to date has focused on understanding the basic mechanisms regulating oral mucosal damage and repair with studies predominantly focused on 1) various aspects of the oral mucosa’s inflammatory response to intrinsic and extrinsic factors and 2) the signalling mechanisms by which adhesion molecules and cytokines are induced by vasoactive peptides and small organic and inorganic compounds (See Publications).

Recently, our research has focused specifically on understanding the regulation of neutrophil recruitment to oral mucosal sites in health and in diseases such as Behcet’s. Using in vitro techniques and human clinical samples studies are directed towards understanding the mechanisms through which an oral ulcer develops with investigations seeking to determine the factors, which influence severity of ulceration by focusing on what is happening in the epithelium. Our research aims to provide a greater understanding of the basic mechanisms that regulate oral mucosal repair, oral epithelial barrier function and recruitment of innate immune cells and interactions with the oral epithelium in health and disease (See Publications).

 

Publications

Key Publications

Peter H Tomlins, Oluyori Adegun, Eleni Hagi-Pavli, Kim Piper, Dan Bader and Farida Fortune, "Scattering Attenuation Microscopy of Oral Epithelial Dysplasia", J. Biomed. Opt., 15, 066003, 2010

Mumcu G, Niazi S, Stewart J, Hagi-Pavli E, Gokani B, Seoudi N, et al. Oral health and related quality of life status in patients from UK and Turkey: a comparative study in Behcet's disease. J Oral Pathol Med. 2009.

Tilakaratne WM, Iqbal Z, Teh MT, Ariyawardana A, Pitiyage G, Cruchley A, Stewart JE, Hagi-Pavli E, Lalli A, Waseem A, Parkinson EK, Fortune F. Upregulation of HIF-1alpha in malignant transformation of oral submucous fibrosis. J Oral Pathol Med. 2008 Jul;37(6):372-7. 18221327.

Teh MT, Tilakaratne WM, Chaplin T, Young BD, Ariyawardana A, Pitiyage G, Lalli A, Stewart JE, Hagi-Pavli E, Cruchley A, Waseem A, Fortune F. Fingerprinting genomic instability in oral submucous fibrosis. J Oral Pathol Med. 2008 Aug;37(7):430-6. Epub 2008 Feb 17.

Lalli A, Tilakaratne WM, Ariyawardana A, Fitchett C, Leigh IM, Hagi-Pavli E, et al. An altered keratinocyte phenotype in oral submucous fibrosis: correlation of keratin K17 expression with disease severity. J Oral Pathol Med. 2008; 37(4): 211-20.

Hagi-Pavli, E., Farthing, P. M., Henshaw, F. N., And Kapas, S. (2005) Presentation of ICAM-1 protein at the cell surface of oral keratinocytes in the presence of adrenomedullin and corticotrophin. Cell Physiol Biochem 15, 167-174

Hagi-Pavli, E., Farthing, P. M., And Kapas, S. (2004) Stimulation of adhesion
molecule expression in human endothelial cells (HUVEC) by adrenomedullin
and corticotrophin. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol 286, C239-246

Pleguezuelos, O., Hagi-Pavli, E., Crowther, G., And Kapas, S.  (2004).
Adrenomedullin signals through NF-kappaB in epithelial cells. FEBS Lett  577, 249-254

Kapas, S., Pahal, K., Cruchley, A. T., Hagi-Pavli, E., And Hinson, J. P (2004).
Expression of adrenomedullin and its receptors in human salivary tissue. J Dent Res 83, 333-337

Selvaratnam L, Cruchley AT, Hagi-Pavli E, Wertz P, Navsaria H, Leigh IM, Squier CA and Williams DM. (2001).
Oral Keratinocytes Develop a Functional and Biochemical Permeability Barrier Similar to Intact Oral Mucosa.  Oral  Diseases 7(4) 252-8.

S. Kapas, A. Bansal, V. Bhargava, R. Maher, D. Malli, E. Hagi-Pavli & R. P. Allaker. (2001). Adrenomedullin expression in pathogen supernatant-challenged oral epithelial cells. Peptides. 22. 1485-1489.

Hagi-Pavli EP, Simms CS, Ostler EL, Brocklehurst K and Gallacher G (1999).
Synthesis of a transition state analogue for the hydrolysis of cocaine: assistance to phosphonylation of a 3beta-hydroxytropane by a neighbouring amide group. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 9 (13): 1881-4.

Taichman NS, Cruchley AT, Fletcher LM, Hagi-Pavli EP, Paleolog EM, Abrams WR, Booth V, Edwards RM, Malamud D. (1998). Vascular endothelial growth factor in normal human salivary glands and saliva: a possible role in the maintenance of mucosal homeostasis. Laboratory Investigation. 78 (7): 869-75.

Kapas S, Brown DW, Farthing PM, Hagi-Pavli E. (1997).
Adrenomedullin has mitogenic effects on human oral keratinocytes: involvement of cyclic AMP.  FEBS Letters. 418 (3): 287-90.

Hagi-Pavli, E, Brown D, Farthing PM, Kapas, S. (1997).
Effects of peptide growth factors on cAMP levels and cellular adhesion factors in human keratinocyte cell lines.
FASEB J 11(3): 14-15

Performance

Achievements in leadership

I have expertise in working with multi-disciplinary teams and enjoy the learning experiences and challenges, which these opportunities bring to my research and teaching practice.  I have also worked on Industrial collaborative projects requiring tight deadlines and milestones to develop novel toothpaste formulations and in vitro oral mucosal models for preclinical screening of new oral healthcare products. 

From July 2006-March 2013, I was the Governance and Ethics lead, overseeing ethics applications in the Clinical and Diagnostic Oral Sciences Centre. In conjunction with this role I also organised and coordinated the local bio-bank for clinical samples from Behcet’s Clinics at St Thomas’s Hospital and The London Behcet’s Centre of Excellence Clinics in (2006-2013)

I have been managing and successfully leading Clinical Dental Postgraduate (PG) courses for over 10 years having led the Postgraduate Diploma in Dental Clinical Sciences courses for 9 years, I more recently developed the MSc in Dental Science for Clinical Practice (DSCP) and I have been the course Director for the MSc in DSCP since its launch in 2014.

In August 2017, I was competitively selected from a QMUL wide application process and awarded a place on the Aurora Leadership Programme. My training will begin in the spring of 2018.

Achievements in administration support

Teeth and Eating: Dental Plaque & Bacteria’ Year 3 Workshop Brecknock Primary School, Camden, June 2013, May 2014 & May 2015

  1. ‘iDiscover Project Forum’ for primary schools in Hackney. The project aimed to link science and technology learning to STEM careers, especially for girls and pupils from a BAME background, tackle stereotypes and improve science capital through the family The Big Bang Science Fair at the Excel Centre
  2. Inspire to Aspire Project’ at Old Ford Primary School, Tower Hamlets. I visited the school on 3 occasions and spoke to Years 4, 5 and 6 regarding my educational and career choices that had led me to my present role
  3. Centre of the Cell in the Blizard Building

Patient & public participation:

I was invited to write an article for Behcet’s Syndrome Society Newsletter detailing our research into Behcet’s Syndrome. ‘Does licking a cut finger speed up the healing? The repairing properties of saliva’ and have presented my research at patient forums. I am a member of the patient led Behcet’s Syndrome Society.

I have been a member of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Network (STEM) since 2009. As a STEM ambassador, I have taken part in several public engagement activities including:

  • Centre of the Cell Summer School Speed Networking Careers Event July 2017
  • Teeth and Eating: Dental Plaque & Bacteria’ Year 3 Workshop Brecknock Primary School, Camden, June 2013, May 2014 & May 2015
  • ‘iDiscover Project Forum’ for primary schools in Hackney. The project aimed to link science and technology learning to STEM careers, especially for girls and pupils from a BAME background, tackle stereotypes and improve science capital through the family The Big Bang Science Fair at the Excel Centre
  • Inspire to Aspire Project’ at Old Ford Primary School, Tower Hamlets. I visited the school on 3 occasions and spoke to Years 4, 5 and 6 regarding my educational and career choices that had led me to my present role
  • Centre of the Cell in the Blizard Building