Vlad graduated from Kharkov National University, Ukraine in 1997, and in 2004 he received his PhD degree at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. Between 2005-2011 he was a postdoctoral researcher and then an Associate Scientist at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA. In 2012-2013 he was a Lecturer in Sleep and Chronobiology at the Department of Biochemistry and Physiology of the University of Surrey, UK. Since December of 2013 Vlad is a Senior Research Fellow and Associate Professor of Neuroscience (since 2015) at the Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Genetics of the University of Oxford. His group is a part of Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute, and his research is on sleep, focusing primarily on its role in neurodegenerative disorders, mental health, ageing and metabolism.
Vlad tutors first and second-year students at Hertford, covering Physiology & Pharmacology and Neuroscience. He also teaches an option he developed on “Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience” for Biomedical Sciences Year 2 (FHS Part I) students.
Vlad is a co-organiser of the Module “Genes, circuits and behaviour” for the Wellcome Trust Doctoral Training Programme in Neuroscience, and leads a Module on “Physiological Basis of Sleep” for the Online Programme in Sleep Medicine since it was established in 2016. He is currently a primary supervisor for four DPhil students.
The main topic of Vlad’s research is sleep at various levels of organisation, including its circadian regulation, neurophysiologic, molecular and cellular mechanisms, and the links between sleep and metabolism, sensory functions and behaviour. We spend about 1/3 of our life asleep and we still do not know why. The predominant idea that sleep plays a restorative role fits well with our subjective experience. However, it is still unknown what needs to be restored, where in the brain or in the body the restorative changes must take place, and why global behavioural shutdown is necessary for sleep to provide its benefits. Although consequences of insufficient or disrupted sleep have major societal and economic implications, the importance of sleep is often underappreciated. Sleep is a vital necessity for health and wellbeing, and insufficient or disrupted sleep has been linked to a broad range of disorders. On the other hand, many diseases lead to sleep disturbances in some form. Vlad’s laboratory uses a wide range of interdisciplinary approaches and methods – from rodent/transgenic models and circadian phenotyping to pharmacology, electrophysiology, signal analyses and mathematical modelling.