Dr Abdullah Obaid Khan BSc (Hons) MRes PhD.

Dr Abdullah Khan

Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences
Henry Wellcome Fellow

Contact details

1st Floor IBR, Birmingham Platelet Group
Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT
Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences: Fellowships

Dr Khan is a Henry Wellcome Fellow based at the Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences at the University of Birmingham. As part of his fellowship his research is also conducted at Boston Children’s Hospital and the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine (MRC WIMM) at the University of Oxford.

Dr Khan’s background is in CRISPR gene editing and super-resolution microscopy. His current work and interests are in developing physiologically relevant, disease agnostic 3D models using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and bioprinted 3D scaffolds.


  • PhD in Clinical and Experimental Medicine (2019)
  • MRes in Molecular Mechanistic Toxicology (2013)
  • BSc (Hones) in Human Biology (2010)


Dr Khan completed his PhD in Cardiovascular Sciences in 2019, before going on to win a Henry Wellcome Fellowship later that year. Dr Khan’s PhD work looked at using CRISPR gene editing to introduce specialist labels which allow for super resolution imaging of key cellular proteins. It also looked at applying induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) for the study of inherited bleeding disorders by differentiating iPSCs into platelet progenitors, megakaryocytes, with CRISPR mediated genetic modifications.

Dr Khan’s current Henry Wellcome Fellowship is a collaborative project between the Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, School of Dentistry, and Healthcare Technology Institutes at the University of Birmingham, the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine at the University of Oxford, and the Vascular Biology programme at Harvard Medical School. This multi-disciplinary research programme aims at applying iPSC and 3D bioprinting technologies to generate physiologically relevant models of the bone and bone marrow to study rare cancers.

Dr Khan’s other research interests extend to using 3D organoid models to study the effects of infection on vascular and cardiac organoids. His recent work, in collaboration with colleagues in ICVS, has looked at the effects of SARS-CoV-2 infection on blood vessels and how that contributes to clots associated with severe COVID-19 infection.

Since beginning his PhD in 2015, Dr Khan has authored and co-authored 23 publications and won numerous awards including a BHF Reflections of Research imaging prize.


Dr Khan’s current research focusses on generating physiologically relevant 3D models of the bone marrow for the study of rare malignancies. His interest is primarily in how cross-talk between stromal cells, which support the micro-environment of tissues like the bone, and blood progenitors like megakaryocytes.

Dr Khan’s work also looks at the effects of SARS-CoV-2 infection on the vasculature, and how this links to the onset of clots, a known complication of severe COVID19.


Recent publications


Stapley, R, Smith, C, Haining, E, Bacon, A, Lax, S, Pisareva, V, Pisarev, A, Watson, S, Khan, A & Morgan, N 2021, 'Heterozygous mutation SLFN14 K208N in mice mediates species-specific differences in platelet and erythroid lineage commitment: SLFN14 mediates lineage commitment in mice', Blood Advances, vol. 5, no. 2, pp. 377–390. https://doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020002404

Nicolson, P, Nock, SH, Hinds, J, Garcia Quintanilla, L, Smith, C, Campos, J, Brill, A, Pike, J, Khan, A, Poulter, N, Kavanagh, D, Watson, S, Watson, CN, Clifford, H, Huissoon, A, Pollitt, A, Eble, JA, Pratt, D, Watson, S & Hughes, C 2021, 'Low-dose Btk inhibitors selectively block platelet activation by CLEC-2', Haematologica, vol. 106, no. 1, pp. 208-219. https://doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2019.218545

Campos, J, Ponomaryov, T, De Prendergast, A, Whitworth, K, Smith, C, Khan, A, Kavanagh, D & Brill, A 2021, 'Neutrophil extracellular traps and inflammasomes cooperatively promote venous thrombosis in mice', Blood Advances, vol. 5, no. 9, pp. 2319–2324. https://doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2020003377

UK GAPP Study Group 2021, 'Novel gene variants in patients with platelet-based bleeding using combined exome sequencing and RNAseq murine expression data', Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 262-268. https://doi.org/10.1111/jth.15119

Almazni, IAF, Stapley, R, Khan, A & Morgan, N 2020, 'A comprehensive bioinformatic analysis of 126 patients with an inherited platelet disorder to identify both sequence and copy number genetic variants', Human Mutation, vol. 41, no. 11, pp. 1848-1865. https://doi.org/10.1002/humu.24114

Pike, J, Simms, V, Smith, C, Morgan, N, Khan, A, Poulter, N, Styles, I & Thomas, S 2020, 'An adaptable analysis workflow for characterization of platelet spreading and morphology', Platelets. https://doi.org/10.1080/09537104.2020.1748588 Abstract

Khan, A, Maclachlan, A, Lowe, G, Nicolson, P, Al Ghaithi, RHR, Thomas, S, Watson, S, Pike, J & Morgan, N 2020, 'High-throughput platelet spreading analysis: a tool for the diagnosis of platelet-based bleeding disorders', Haematologica, vol. 105, pp. e124-e128. https://doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2019.225912

Khan, A, Slater, A, Maclachlan, A, Nicolson, P, Pike, J, Reyat, J, Yule, J, Stapley, R, Rayes, J, Thomas, S & Morgan, N 2020, 'Post-translational polymodification of β1-tubulin regulates motor protein localisation in platelet production and function', Haematologica, vol. 2020, no. 00, pp. 1-43. https://doi.org/10.3324/haematol.2020.270793

Khan, AO, Maio, AD, Guggenheim, EJ, Chetwynd, AJ, Pencross, D, Tang, S, Belinga-Desaunay, M-FA, Thomas, SG, Rappoport, JZ & Lynch, I 2020, 'Surface chemistry-dependent evolution of the nanomaterial corona on TiO2 nanomaterials following uptake and sub-cellular localization', Nanomaterials, vol. 10, no. 3, 401. https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10030401

Pike, J, Khan, A, Pallini, C, Thomas, S, Mund, M, Ries, J, Poulter, N & Styles, I 2020, 'Topological data analysis quantifies biological nano-structure from single molecule localization microscopy', Bioinformatics, vol. 36, no. 5, pp. 1614–1621. https://doi.org/10.1093/bioinformatics/btz788

Khan, A, White, CW, Pike, J, Yule, J, Slater, A, Hill, SJ, Poulter, N, Thomas, S & Morgan, N 2019, 'Optimised insert design for improved single-molecule imaging and quantification through CRISPR-Cas9 mediated knock-in', Scientific Reports, vol. 9, no. 1, 14219. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-50733-9

Hansjosten, I, Rapp, J, Reiner, L, Vatter, R, Fritsch-Decker, S, Peravali, R, Palosaari, T, Joossens, E, Gerloff, K, Macko, P, Whelan, M, Gilliland, D, Ojea-Jimenez, I, Monopoli, MP, Rocks, L, Garry, D, Dawson, K, Röttgermann, PJF, Murschhauser, A, Rädler, JO, Tang, SVY, Gooden, P, Belinga-Desaunay, M-FA, Khan, AO, Briffa, S, Guggenheim, E, Papadiamantis, A, Lynch, I, Valsami-Jones, E, Diabaté, S & Weiss, C 2018, 'Microscopy-based high-throughput assays enable multi-parametric analysis to assess adverse effects of nanomaterials in various cell lines', Archives of toxicology, vol. 92, no. 2, pp. 633-649. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00204-017-2106-7

Morgan, N, Fletcher, S, Khan, A, Pisarev, A, Pisareva, V & Tcherepanov, A 2018, 'Role of the novel endoribonuclease SLFN14 and its disease causing mutations in ribosomal degradation', RNA, vol. 24, no. 7, pp. 939-949. https://doi.org/10.1261/rna.066415.118


Poulter, N, Khan, A, Pallini, C & Thomas, S 2018, Single molecule localisation and structured illumination microscopy of platelet proteins. in Platelets and megakaryocytes: volume 4, advanced protocols and perspectives. vol. 4, Methods in Molecular Biology, vol. 1812, Humana Press. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-8585-2

Review article

Khan, A & Pike, J 2020, 'Super-resolution imaging and quantification of megakaryocytes and platelets', Platelets. https://doi.org/10.1080/09537104.2020.1732321

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