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Development of a 3D biomimetic scaffold for mammary gland remodelling of breast cancer therapy evaluation.

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Friday, November 01, 2019
  • Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)
    Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

Project Description

3-years PhD studentship is available in Di Leva’s lab at the School of Pharmacy and Bioengineering of Keele University, United Kingdom. Di Leva’s lab studies the mechanisms of cancer development with the aim to identify vulnerabilities in cancer cells and define innovative way to target them. This is done using a combination of multiple approaches spanning from biomaterials to computational analysis and through molecular and cell biology lab work.

The main goal of this project is to develop a decellularised mammary gland to support mammary gland regeneration and enable improved in vitro breast cancer therapeutic evaluation. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide and, with over 6,300,000 survivors in the world, breast cancer survivors represent the large majority of cancer survivors. These patients will undergo breast conserving surgery or mastectomy that can have a well-recognised psychological and physical impact on women, leading to anxiety and depression. Thus, breast reconstruction has acquired an essential aspect in the management of breast cancer. Tissue engineering presents a promising opportunity in breast reconstructive surgery but improved understanding of cellular and material components is key for the success of the final translational outcome. The project will be developed in collaboration with the laboratories of Prof Forsyth and Prof Yang at the School of Pharmacy and Bioengineering of Keele University.


Applicants should have (or realistically expect to gain) a master’s degree in biology, biotechnology, bioengineering (or equivalent). A strong interest in stem cell biology and tissue engineering is required and experience in bioinformatics is preferred. The student needs to be dedicated to carry out long-term multidisciplinary research, which involves regular maintenance of cell cultures and animal work, some molecular work, as well as computational genomic analyses. Very good knowledge of English language and good communication skills are essential. Posts are open to UK nationals. EU nationals, who have spent at least 3 years prior to the application resident in the UK, are also eligible to apply.

Please ensure that you reference the studentship number (PHaB2019-01) throughout your application.

For any queries relating to the application process, please contact PGR Administration ()

Funding Notes

Funding is available for three years to cover fees for PhD registration (2019/20 home/EU rates currently: £4,327) and a research studentship stipend starting at £15,009 per annum for 2019/20.

How good is research at Keele University in Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 43.98

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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