Emma Bird

Emma Bird

BSc (Hons), PhD

Research Associate

Contact Details:

School of Clinical Dentistry
Claremont Crescent
S10 2TA

Telephone: +44 (0) 114 215 9373
Email: e.v.bird@sheffield.ac.uk



I joined the Oral Neuroscience Research group as a Research Technician in 1996 and registered as a staff candidate for a part-time PhD, entitled “Immunocytchemical studies on neuromas of branches of the trigeminal nerve”, which I completed in 2004 and was promoted to Research Associate. I have 20 years research experience working in the field of pain research with colleagues in neuroscience groups around the world and in collaboration with industry. 


My main research focus is in the mechanisms underlying nerve injury-induced and inflammatory pain, specifically in the orofacial region, arising as a consequence of trigeminal nerve injury. Recently I have developed a keen interest in the psychology of pain, in particular psychosocial factors and their role in chronic pain.


Research Interests:

  • Trigeminal nerve injuries including lingual and inferior alveolar nerves
  • Mechanisms of nerve injury-induced and inflammatory chronic pain
  • Psychology of pain including psychosocial factors depression, anxiety, coping, and catastrophisation
  • Sex and gender differences in pain

Current Projects:

  • Study of human lingual nerve and tooth pulp tissues to investigate the underlying mechanisms of chronic oro-facial pain
  • A novel role for the chemokine lymphotactin and its receptor in trigeminal sensitisation
  • Development of MRI in a preclinical model of chronic neuropathic pain

EB Research

Sodium channel Nav1.9 expression in a painful lingual nerve neuroma.

Research Team

PhD Students:

  • Hisham Shembesh - The effects of inflammatory cytokines on functional nerve recovery and development of neuropathic pain after peripheral nerve repair. Supervisors: Dr Simon Atkins, Dr Emma Bird, Prof Fiona Boissonade.
  • Diana Tavares Ferreira - Resolvin receptors expression in the nervous system. Supervisors: Prof Fiona Boissonade, Dr Dan Lambert, Dr Emma Bird.

Professional Activities
  • University of Sheffield Thesis Mentor. Recognised as a dedicated outstanding thesis mentor http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ris/ecr/mentoring/dotm
  • Journal reviewer for Archives of Oral Biology, Brain Research, Journal of Dental Research, Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry.

Twitter: @DrEmmaVBird