About the Project
The UCL Centre for Doctoral Training in Molecular Modelling and Materials Science is offering a fully funded studentship to a highly motivated candidate to start in September 2018. The studentship will cover tuition fees at UK/EU rate plus a maintenance stipend for four years.
The project will be in collaboration with Dr Rebecca Williams, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), UK. The student will carry out his/her doctoral research at UCL and also have to opportunity for work placements at DSTL, UK.
General project description: Organophosphorus nerve agents have been used in chemical warfare for >50 years. Recent developments in ultra-high performance liquid chromatography have demonstrated the identification of nerve agent adducts in blood, urine and hair, however significant work-up of samples for this technique can be time consuming. The use magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to identify the presence of such nerve agent adducts in patient samples could revolutionise their detection and avoid the need for significant sample processing. In this project, commonly-used clinical MRI contrast agents will be evaluated as ligating agents to nerve agent adducts, e.g. sarin-tyrosine. Changing MRI signal upon coordination to the nerve agent will provide clear and strong evidence for positive nerve agent detection.
Interested candidates should contact Dr Gemma-Louise Davies ([Email Address Removed]) with a degree transcript and a motivation letter expressing interest in this project. Informal inquiries are encouraged.
Applications will be accepted until 30 June 2018 but the position will be filled as soon as a suitable candidate has been identified.
The applicants should have, or be expecting to achieve, a first or upper second class Honours degree or equivalent in chemistry or related subject ideally with some experience of inorganic chemistry synthesis and materials chemistry analytical techniques.
Due to funding restrictions, this studentship is only open to applicants from the UK and EU, who have been resident in the UK for at least 3 years preceding their start on the programme or have indefinite leave to remain in the UK. Applicants will be required to undergo a security check prior to starting.