Dr Andrew P Holmes BMedsc PhD

Dr Andrew P Holmes

School of Biomedical Sciences
Lecturer in Cardiac and Respiratory Physiology
Next Generation Biotechnology Theme Lead

Contact details

Institute of Clinical Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Andrew Holmes is a Lecturer in Cardiac and Respiratory Physiology in the Institute of Clinical Sciences.

His research interests are in the field of cardiovascular and respiratory physiology and pathology, with an emphasis on identifying novel mechanisms underlying hypertension and cardiac arrhythmia.

Dr Holmes has a key research focus on evaluating how cardiorespiratory reflex dysfunction caused by hyperactive carotid body chemoreceptors promotes hypertension and cardiac autonomic dysfunction. He aims to develop new or repurposed therapies that directly target the carotid body to reduce hypertension and arrhythmia in associated diseases such as obstructive sleep apnoea and COPD. This work is currently supported by the Wellcome Trust.

In addition, he has a specific interest in understanding how acute and chronic hypoxia disrupt the electrical integrity of atrial tissue leading to heart rhythm disturbances. This work is currently supported by grants from BHF.  

Dr Holmes is an enthusiastic teacher and contributes to the delivery of both undergraduate and postgraduate courses. He is joint module lead on the Biomedical Science BSc Year 3 module- Hypoxia in Health and Disease.


  • PhD in Medical Science, University of Birmingham, 2013
  • BMedSc (Hons), Class I, University of Birmingham, 2009


Dr Holmes is an enthusiastic teacher and understands the importance of delivering high quality research led and research informed content to undergraduate students.

Undergraduate teaching:

  • Biomedical Science BSc
    • Joint Module Lead on Hypoxia in Health and Disease (2018 - present)
    •  Cardiorespiratory 1 and 2 (2013-present)
    • Digestion and Renal Sciences (2018-present)
    • Cellular Biochemistry and Biology (2018-present)
  • Medicine and Surgery MBChB 
    • Introduction to Respiratory Medicine (2018- present)
    • Cardiovascular Sciences (2018- present)
    • Digestion (2018- present)
  • Dental Surgery BDS
    • Cardiovascular Pharmacology (2018- present)

Small group laboratory practical sessions:

  • Biomedical Science BSc
    • Studying the alterations in electrical properties of atrial cardiomyocytes induced by hypoxia and re-oxygenation (2014- present).

Dr Holmes also currently supervises undergraduates working on their final year research projects.

Other activities

  • Member of the Physiological Society
  • Member of the European Society of Cardiology
  • Dr Holmes is a tutor on the Access to Birmingham (A2B) Scheme that aims to encourage under-privileged students to consider and prepare for admission into a medical/scientific degree course.


Recent publications


Swiderska, A, Coney, AM, Alzahrani, AA, Aldossary, HS, Batis, N, Ray, CJ, Kumar, P & Holmes, AP 2021, 'Mitochondrial succinate metabolism and reactive oxygen species are important but not essential for eliciting carotid body and ventilatory responses to hypoxia in the rat', Antioxidants, vol. 10, no. 6, 840. https://doi.org/10.3390/antiox10060840

Holmes, AP, Saxena, P, Kabir, SN, O'Shea, C, Kuhlmann, SM, Gupta, S, Fobian, D, Apicella, C, O'Reilly, M, Syeda, F, Reyat, JS, Smith, GL, Workman, AJ, Pavlovic, D, Fabritz, L & Kirchhof, P 2021, 'The atrial resting membrane potential confers sodium current sensitivity to propafenone, flecainide and dronedarone', Heart Rhythm, vol. 2021, no. 00, pp. 1-37. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hrthm.2021.03.016

Alzahrani, AA, Cao, LL, Aldossary, HS, Nathanael, D, Fu, J, Ray, CJ, Brain, KL, Kumar, P, Coney, AM & Holmes, AP 2021, 'β-Adrenoceptor blockade prevents carotid body hyperactivity and elevated vascular sympathetic nerve density induced by chronic intermittent hypoxia', Pfluegers Archiv: European journal of physiology , vol. 473, no. 1, pp. 37-51. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00424-020-02492-0

Holmes, AP, Ray, CJ, Kumar, P & Coney, AM 2020, 'A student practical to conceptualize the importance of Poiseuille's law and flow control in the cardiovascular system', American Journal of Physiology - Advances in Physiology Education, vol. 44, no. 3, pp. 436-443. https://doi.org/10.1152/advan.00004.2019

Holmes, AP 2020, 'Damage control: carotid body activation and remodelling in response to aseptic tissue injury', Experimental Physiology, vol. 105, no. 9, pp. 1467-1469. https://doi.org/10.1113/EP088923

Cao, L, Holmes, A, Marshall, J, Fabritz, L & Brain, K 2020, 'Dynamic monitoring of single-terminal norepinephrine transporter rate in the rodent cardiovascular system: a novel fluorescence imaging method', Autonomic Neuroscience, vol. 223, 102611. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.autneu.2019.102611

Reyat, JS, Chua, W, Cardoso, VR, Witten, A, Kastner, PM, Kabir, SN, Sinner, MF, Wesselink, R, Holmes, AP, Pavlovic, D, Stoll, M, Kääb, S, Gkoutos, GV, de Groot, JR, Kirchhof, P & Fabritz, L 2020, 'Reduced left atrial cardiomyocyte PITX2 and elevated circulating BMP10 predict atrial fibrillation after ablation', JCI Insight, vol. 5, no. 16, e139179. https://doi.org/10.1172/jci.insight.139179

O’shea, C, Holmes, AP, Winter, J, Correia, J, Ou, X, Dong, R, He, S, Kirchhof, P, Fabritz, L, Rajpoot, K & Pavlovic, D 2019, 'Cardiac optogenetics and optical mapping – overcoming spectral congestion in all-optical cardiac electrophysiology', Frontiers in Physiology, vol. 10, 182. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphys.2019.00182

O'Shea, C, Holmes, A, Yu, TY, Winter, J, Wells, S, Correia, J, Boukens, BJ, de Groot, J, Chu, GS, Li, X, Ng, GA, Kirchhof, P, Fabritz, L, Rajpoot, K & Pavlovic, D 2019, 'ElectroMap: High-throughput open-source software for analysis and mapping of cardiac electrophysiology', Scientific Reports, vol. 9, no. 1, 1389. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-38263-2

O'Shea, C, Holmes, AP, Yu, TY, Winter, J, Wells, SP, Parker, BA, Fobian, D, Johnson, DM, Correia, J, Kirchhof, P, Fabritz, L, Rajpoot, K & Pavlovic, D 2019, 'High-throughput analysis of optical mapping data using Electromap', Journal of Visualized Experiments , no. 148, e59663. https://doi.org/10.3791/59663

O'Shea, C, Winter, J, Holmes, AP, Johnson, DM, Correia, JN, Kirchhof, P, Fabritz, L, Rajpoot, K & Pavlovic, D 2019, 'Temporal irregularity quantification and mapping of optical action potentials using wave morphology similarity', Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pbiomolbio.2019.12.004

Holmes, A, Ray, C, Thompson, E, Alshehri, Z, Coney, A & Kumar, P 2018, 'Adrenaline activation of the carotid body: key to CO2 and pH homeostasis in hypoglycaemia and potential pathological implications in cardiovascular disease', Respiratory physiology & neurobiology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.resp.2018.05.008

Holmes, A, Ray, C, Coney, A & Kumar, P 2018, 'Is carotid body physiological O2 sensitivity determined by a unique mitochondrial phenotype?', Frontiers in Physiology, vol. 9, 562. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphys.2018.00562

Review article

Aldossary, HS, Alzahrani, AA, Nathanael, D, Alhuthail, EA, Ray, CJ, Batis, N, Kumar, P, Coney, AM & Holmes, AP 2020, 'G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling in the carotid body: roles in hypoxia and cardiovascular and respiratory disease', International Journal of Molecular Sciences, vol. 21, no. 17, 6012. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms21176012

Short survey

O'Shea, C, Kabir, SN, Holmes, AP, Lei, M, Fabritz, L, Rajpoot, K & Pavlovic, D 2020, 'Cardiac optical mapping – state-of-the-art and future challenges', International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, vol. 126, 105804. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocel.2020.105804

View all publications in research portal