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Research groups

Yu-Ling Ma

BSc, MSc, PhD

Group Leader

Yuling graduated in biology from Peking University, Beijing China. Her interest in using pharmacological methods to study Chinese herbal medicine led her to a research position in the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences to investigate  the cardioprotective effects of herbal extracts using in vivo ischemia and in vitro cellular electrophysiology experimental models. In the early 1990s, she had the opportunity to work as a visiting scholar in the Department of Pharmacology, UMDS at St. Thomas’ Hospital, London, where under the supervision of Professor Alison Gurney, she studied the effects of herbal components on the electrophysiological properties of cardiac myocytes using patch clamp techniques. At the end of this research, supported by an ORS award and a K. C. Wong Scholarship, she was awarded a PhD by the University of London in 1995. She was then offered a Research Fellow position in Imperial College to work on a pharmaceutical project to study the antidotal effect of alpha-1-acid glycoprotein on antidepressant induced sodium channel blockade. This project was led by the late Professor John Henry.

Yuling joined the Department at Oxford in 2008 to work in Professor Richard Vaughan-Jones’ research group, and later in Professor Clive Ellory’s group.

Apart from working in the field of cardiac cellular electrophysiology, Yuling also worked in the field of neuron electrophysiology to study the effect of phytocannabinoids on cerebellum brain slices, using single and multi-cellular electrophysiology techniques at the University of Reading. 

Yuling established a Chinese herbal medicine research lab at DPAG in 2015 and leads a 5 year research programme to study an antiarrhythmic multi-herbal Chinese medicine using cellular electrophysiological methods; this project is sponsored by Shaanxi Momentum Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., China.