A considerable number of infectious diseases affect the lymphatic system and are difficult to treat because the pathogens that cause them can form reservoirs in such tissues, where current treatments can not provide sufficient concentrations of the active to eradicate these microorganisms. Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is an example of this. LF remains a challenge for public health, currently threatening 893 million people in 49 countries. LF impairs the lymphatic system and can lead to the abnormal enlargement of body parts, causing pain, severe disability and social stigma. In this project, the student will develop novel nanocrystal-based formulations to target parasite reservoirs in the lymphatic system by means of top-down approaches, such us high-pressure homogenisation and bead milling. The formulations will be fully characterised in vitro and successful candidates will be tested in animals models with the aim of evaluating their pharmacokinetics and biodistribution profiles. The student will be involved in a world-renowned research group and will count on the support of a multidisciplinary team and the availability of cutting-edge infrastructure to develop the project. A strong emphasis will be placed on boosting both theoretical and technical skills of the student, as well as enhancing their communication and teamwork abilities. All these aspects together will greatly improve the future professional perspective and employability of the candidate.
Applicants should have a 1st or 2.1 honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. Relevant subjects include Pharmacy, Molecular Biology, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Biochemistry, Biological/Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry, Engineering, or a closely related discipline. Students who have a 2.2 honours degree and a Master’s degree may also be considered, but the School reserves the right to shortlist for interview only those applicants who have demonstrated high academic attainment to date.
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