About

I have recently started working as a Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences at Newcastle University. My main roles will be redeveloping some of the modules (in particular, for first year practical skills) in light of the current situation surrounding COVID-19 and social distancing measures.

Prior to starting at Newcastle, I worked as a Research Fellow in Cardiovascular Science at the University of Leeds, investigating the role of exercise in structural and electrical remodelling of the heart, with a particular focus on the development of arrhythmias in heart failure, using a combined computational and experimental approach.

I also undertook my PhD in the School of Biomedical Sciences at Leeds, developing a novel computational model of rat ventricular electrophysiology and calcium handling, and using this new model to explore how remodelling associated with heart failure can be pro-arrhythmic. My undergraduate degree in BSc Human Physiology was also undertaken at Leeds.

Outside of work, I enjoy listening to music and going to gigs, playing and watching rugby (I'm a Northampton Saints and England fan), and taking my dog, Nessie (a cockapoo/lakeland terrier cross), out for adventures.

Research

My research interests are in the use of computational models of cardiac electrophysiology and calcium handling to explore how pro-arrhythmic activity arises from remodelling associated with disease states (such as heart failure), whether exercise ameliorates or alters such activity, and the use of experimental techniques (such as optical mapping and diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging) to complement and validate such models.

I'm also interested in pedagogical research, and am passionate about teaching and maximising the student learning experience. My PhD was funded through a demonstrating studentship and I have been fortunate enough to gain Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy in recognition of my commitment to teaching excellence over the years.

Publications

Contributions

Blog

  • 6th May 2020 - Strange times, new job!

    I'm delighted to be starting a new role as Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences at Newcastle University. I'm very much looking forward to meeting new colleagues and students and getting stuck in! That being said, in these unusual times, I'm having to start remotely and am in fact still in Leeds. Fingers crossed that a return to normality can come sooner rather than later, and that the measures we've taken globally can help to eliminate the threat of COVID-19. For now, thanks be to Zoom for allowing me to virtually meet new colleagues - time to start preparing for the forthcoming academic year!

  • 16th March 2020 - Methods paper

    The full-text PDF of our Methods paper "Multi-scale approaches for the simulation of cardiac electrophysiology: II - Tissue-level structure and function" is now available online. Click here to view, and marvel at our mathematical and scientific wizardry!

  • 27th February 2020 - NCRG

    I'm looking forward to this year's Northern Cardiovascular Research Group (NCRG) meeting, on the 7th April at the University of Bradford. Always good to catch up with cardiovascular researchers from other UK universities (not exclusively Northern ones, despite the name!), and socialise. For updates and information, check out the NCRG website, kindly hosted by Cairn Research.

  • 21st February 2020 - Twitter

    I've set myself up a proper professional Twitter account to fully engage with science chat on social media. Follow @DrHarleySC to stay up to date!

  • 7th February 2020 - The GOD Command

    The University of Leeds' supercomputer system, ARC, has massive amounts of short-term storage that isn't backed up, so is only useful for temporary storage of data. The filesystem is checked once a week, and files unused for 90 days are automatically deleted. This is good because it encourages people to transfer their data elsewhere, freeing up space and speeding up the system (a while back, the storage was over 90% full and it meant simulations took ages to run). However, sometimes it's handy to keep stuff on ARC because, for example, it's part of a running project that you're not ready to transfer the data for yet. So, we figured out a handy command to run that will recursively go through your files, directories and subdirectories, and 'touch' them (which is Linux speak for updating the 'last modified date' property of the file). We call this majestic command The God Command:
    find . -exec touch {} \;

  • 4th February 2020 - Handy Linux commands (grep, sed, awk)

    grep
    Often I find myself wanting to search for which files in my current directory (and subdirectories) contain a particular word or phrase (for example, a variable used in various C files). To do so:
    grep -rn . -e 'text'
    grep is the command, -rn means recursively and show the line number (add -w to match the whole word), . is for the present directory (and all subdirectories) and 'text' (including the quote marks) is the text you want to find.

    awk
    The modelling framework I use gives me output files with over 40 columns, each of which containing different variables. Sometimes I want to copy these output files from one place to another (usually, off the supercomputer to my local machine) but am only interested in a few columns, so to save time copying large files across, you can use awk to cut out particular columns:
    awk '{print $1,$3,$7}' file > out
    The above command prints columns 1, 3 and 7 from file to a new file out, which will be a much smaller file so faster to copy.

    sed
    Similarly, to cut particular lines from a file into a new file:
    sed -n '100,200p,201q' file > out
    This will cut lines 100 to 200 from file and print them to the new file out.

  • 3rd February 2020 (2) - New publication!

    Our new paper is now available online, entitled "Multi-scale approaches for the simulation of cardiac electrophysiology: II - tissue-level structure and function". It's part 2 (part 1 not yet available) of a duo of papers detailed the methods underlying computational modelling of cardiac electrophysiology. Enjoy!

  • 3rd February 2020 (1) - Website begins

    So I've decided to start a website in an attempt to organise my thoughts, work, and anything else I feel I should write down and keep a record of (might well just be recipes that I always lose track of!). And here it is! I've adapted a template from HTML5up, which is an excellent resource for anyone looking to work from a HTML template rather than relying on apps/programs/online website builders. Anyway, that's the introductory blog post done, now to try and populate some more of the website...

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i = 0;

while (!deck.isInOrder()) {
    print 'Iteration ' + i;
    deck.shuffle();
    i++;
}

print 'It took ' + i + ' iterations to sort the deck.';

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Item One Ante turpis integer aliquet porttitor. 29.99
Item Two Vis ac commodo adipiscing arcu aliquet. 19.99
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