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Development of in situ Raman spectroscopy methods and instrumentation for monitoring industrial bioprocesses

   Institute of Systems, Molecular and Integrative Biology

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  Prof R Goodacre, Prof D Kell, Dr Ken Williams  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

Background and aims:

The aim of this project is to develop process monitoring applications surrounding (micro)biological fermentation processes, biopharmaceutical bioprocesses, and enzyme catalysed reactions. The work will involve the use of a newly developed portable process Raman instrument which is linked fibre optic probes for remote in situ sampling.

The project will interface with current activities at the University of Liverpool with a new project funded by EPSERC and SFI entitled Cutting Edge Analytical Solutions for Smart, Integrated, Efficient Biopharmaceutical Production (EP/V042882/1). This project has brought together participants at NIBRT (National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training) and Edinburgh University. The group at NIBRT having access to pilot plant scale reactors and the expertise to interface equipment to facilitate continual reaction monitoring.

Key questions to be addressed during the PhD:

·      How can Raman spectroscopy be developed to provide a robust measurement tool for monitoring in situ bioprocesses?

o  These might include hardware interfaces to equipment but also communication protocols and the development of appropriate data analysis tools.

·      Will these improvements in performance allow the application of the technique to reach a wider range of process problems?

o  Hence the wide scope for micro/biological fermentation processes and biopharmaceutical bioprocesses.

·      Can the method be extended to cover the enzyme catalysed processes?

o  This would reaction screening to optimise reaction conditions for (e.g.) directed evolution.

Interface with Renishaw the industrial partner in this ICASE:

The aim of this project is to utilise the recent Renishaw technological development of its process monitoring system to create an optimised platform supported by well-chosen application solutions for its future exploitation in the biopharmaceutical bioprocesses and bio fermentation communities. In addition, screening of enzyme catalysed processes should also lead to optimisation of the processes in terms of directed evolution of enzyme and reaction conditions that might benefit process such as polymer recycling. 

Application Web Address: and

Funding Notes

This is an Industrial CASE PhD award with EPSRC and the industrial partner is Renishaw plc.
The PhD is fully funded for UK students for 4 years.
The ideal candidate would be someone with a degree in Chemistry, including analytical science and computation.
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