At school, Mike Dodd enjoyed biology and chemistry, and had an inspirational teacher who had worked in research. It was therefore an obvious choice for Mike to study biochemistry and follow his passion to become a scientist.
While an undergraduate at Bath, Mike travelled to the USA twice for research placements investigating the brain. On one trip he joined a team trying to understand why the brain swells when you drink too much water.
Although he was interested in neurology, Mike really wanted to know more about the heart condition that runs in his family. So in 2008 he came to Oxford to undertake a DPhil in heart research. He is currently researching how and why the heart fails. He uses magnetic resonance imaging to study the heart’s structure and function. This technique uses powerful magnets to allow the visualisation of the inside of the body, including the heart.
Mike has been actively involved in communicating science, including taking part in “I’m A Scientist Get Me Out Of Here”, the ‘Wow How’ science fair in Oxford, and the ‘Big Bang’ science fair in Birmingham. Every year the lab Mike works in opens their doors to British Heart Foundation Volunteers so they can see what happens to the money they help raise.
About researching the heart, Mike says: “I find it really exciting to work on the heart. It’s amazing to realise it needs to beat 100,000 times a day, for the whole of your life.”