Synthetic biology: making molecular teams to control living systems and light
The Howarth lab works on innovating protein nanotechnologies for cancer analysis and immune activation, including the design of vaccines for global health challenges. Inspired by extraordinary molecular features from the natural world, our research develops new approaches for disease prevention, diagnosis and therapy, as well as for fundamental insight into how biological systems function. This project will involve engineering of a protein from a bacterial pathogen to create, analyse and apply a range of tailored biological architectures on the hundreds of nanometres scale. Advancing our abilities at this frontier should have implications for a wide variety of areas, including the ability to control cell behaviour (relevant to enhancing therapeutics and vaccines) and controlling light interactions (relevant to sensing, heating and organism visibility).
The project will be an iCASE studentship with QinetiQ, giving the student an enhanced stipend. The student will be based at the University of Oxford Department of Biochemistry but will also have the opportunity to spend at least 12 weeks with the industrial partner.
Techniques used will include molecular biology, protein biochemistry, culture of bacterial and mammalian cells, fluorescence microscopy and electron microscopy. There may be opportunity to learn other approaches including X-ray crystallography, AFM and computer-based protein design. Training will be provided as required. Candidates will be considered with a background in the biosciences, chemistry or physics/engineering.
EPSRC iCASE studentship with enhanced stipend
UK and EU students eligible and must meet EPSRC residence requirements