Protein-based therapeutics have shown remarkable success in modulating extracellular targets; however, effective intracellular delivery remains a key challenge in biotherapeutics. Current intracellular protein delivery strategies rely on endocytic mechanisms, resulting in endosomal entrapment and protein degradation. The current project will engineer novel self-navigating nanocapsules, enabling effective cytoplasmic protein delivery and sub-organelles targeting following endocytosis-independent cellular uptake. This elegant and straightforward protein delivery approach to intracellular targets could open the door to novel treatment opportunities in many relevant disorders, including cancer, metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases.
This project will provide a unique opportunity for excellent students to work in a stimulating multidisciplinary team. The candidate will be designing and characterising novel nanocarriers for efficient intracellular protein delivery. The successful candidate will be a highly motivated, hard-working graduate with excellent communication and organisational skills.
The project will offer innovative approaches for biologics delivery. The PhD student will be encouraged to engage in a variety of impact activities, disseminate the research project findings through publications in relevant peer-reviewed journals, present the results of the study at conferences (in-person and/or online), and make them accessible to general public through broader channels, such as social media and popular science outlets.
Home applicants must meet the following academic criteria:
1st or 2.1 honours degree in a relevant subject. Relevant subjects include Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Biochemistry, Biological/Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry, Engineering, or a closely related discipline.
International applicants must meet the following academic criteria:
IELTS (or equivalent) of 7.0, a 2.1 honours degree (or equivalent) and a master’s degree in a relevant subject.
Applicants should apply through the University's Direct Application Portal: https://dap.qub.ac.uk/portal/user/u_login.php