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Universal Protein Monitoring Platform Based on Smart Holographic Sensor

   Department of Chemical & Biological Engineering

About the Project

This Sheffield-Singapore partnership aims at developing a universal protein monitoring platform to serve a wide range of industries (pharma, food, chemical) and to catapult protein R&D. The global protein therapeutics market size was valued at $284B in 2020, and is estimated to reach $567B by 2030. The same upward trend is observed for all other markets involving proteins (e.g., protein ingredients, protein supplements, alternative proteins, and industrial enzymes etc). Continuous monitoring of a target protein during a protein manufacturing process is highly desirable to reduce manufacturing cost and improve product quality. However, a process analytical technology that satisfies (a) continuous operation, (b) selective monitoring of a target protein with high sensitivity, and (c) uncoupling from target protein property is currently unavailable, to our best knowledge. This collaborative project will fill this technology gap through synergistic integration of protein science expertise in Sheffield and holographic sensing expertise in Singapore. The ultimate goal is to have a widely applicable protein sensing device that can be (a) applied in protein manufacturing factories for process control monitoring, (b) built into existing or new microbial growth devices, and (c) utilised to develop novel laboratory equipment for protein R&D.

Successful candidate will be registered as a PhD student at the University of Sheffield and co-supervised by Prof. Wong and Dr. Chan. During the PhD, the student will split their time equally between the University of Sheffield and Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech, https://www.a-star.edu.sg/simtech). In Sheffield, the student will work in a team with extensive industrial links and in a lab fully equipped with state-of-the-art research facilities covering microbiology, molecular biology, protein science and biophysics. The research team also has enormous experience in commercializing university research. SIMTech is a flagship research institute in Singapore, dedicated to developing high-value manufacturing technology and human capital to enhance the competitiveness of Singapore’s manufacturing industry. It collaborates with various multinational and local companies in the precision engineering, medtech, aerospace, automotive, marine, oil & gas, electronics, semiconductor, logistics, and other sectors.  

Through this project, the student will develop a range of technical skills, from advanced protein science through to sensor technology. Further, they will acquire transferable skills essential for developing a career in academic or industrial sectors.

Please see this link for information on how to apply: https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/cbe/postgraduate/phd/how-apply. Please include the name of your proposed supervisor and the title of the PhD project within your application.

Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, a first or upper second class UK honours degree (or equivalent qualifications gained outside the UK) in chemical engineering, bioengineering, bioscience, biomedical science or relevant disciplines. Applicants should be registering on their first year of study with the University for 2023/24 on an eligible programme of doctoral study.

Funding Notes

Candidates must qualify for home fee status.

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