University of Portsmouth Featured PhD Programmes
Anglia Ruskin University ARU Featured PhD Programmes

Microneedle devices for transdermal drug delivery and disease detection

Faculty of Medical Sciences Graduate School

, Applications accepted all year round Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

The skin is a very effective barrier against substance exchange between our body and the external environment. This is necessary to ward off the invasion of pathogens but presents a significant challenge where effective drug absorption across the skin, or extraction of biological samples from the skin, is desired. Microneedles are needles <1 mm long that are usually incorporated into skin patches. When the patches are applied on to the skin, the microneedles penetrate the skin, creating micro-pores in the skin barrier without causing pain or bleeding. These micro-pores allow substances to be transported with ease between the patch and the skin tissue.
In our laboratory, we use our microneedle technologies to: (1) enhance drug delivery across the skin; and (2) facilitate biomarker detection for disease diagnosis and monitoring. Our work in these two areas has broad biomedical applications, including pain relief, infections, neurological disorders and cancers. We are currently seeking motivated students of high calibres to develop and refine the microneedle technologies for specific biomedical applications.
(1) Drug delivery: The aim of this work is to design and formulate microneedle skin patches for drug delivery into the skin. These will involve the use of novel materials and innovative formulation techniques to design microneedle patches for better drug targeting, extending drug release to reduce dosing frequency, and precisely programming drug release to address complex dosing regimens.
(2) Disease detection and monitoring: The aim of this work is to develop microneedle devices for rapid and accurate diagnosis/monitoring of skin diseases. We have developed microneedle devices that can extract specific biomarkers from the skin for in vitro analysis without removing any skin tissue (biopsy) or extracting any amount of blood. We have also developed microneedle biosensors that can detect biomolecules in real time.
Our selected publications can be found here:
Newcastle University’s School of Pharmacy has a vibrant research community. The student will additionally be affiliated with the Translational and Clinical Research Institute, which provides access to further world-class research infrastructure and expertise. We have extensive collaborations with researchers, engineers and clinicians in Newcastle and beyond to provide training and support for our PhD candidates. The university’s graduate school programme provides further support for the professional development of graduate students.
Applicant should hold or expect to hold a 2:1 or 1st class degree in a biomedical or pharmaceutical science or equivalent subject.

If you are interested in applying, send your CV and covering letter detailing your reasons for applying for this studentship to Postgraduate Student Coordinator at School of Pharmacy at .

Funding Notes

Applications accepted all year round. The successful candidate will be expected to provide full funding for Tuition Fees, living expenses and maintenance. Applicants should also be aware that additional research costs are required (in addition to the above Tuition Fees and Living Expenses) for project running and consumables. Details of the full cost of study can be found on our website: View Website. There is no additional funding attached to this project.

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