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EPSRC - Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry

4-year PhD Scholarships in Chemistry, Engineering, Biosciences and Business available

Developing technologies to combat bacterial biofilms
EPSRC CDT in Sustainable Chemistry - 4 Years PhD Studentship

About the project:

A fully funded PhD studentship (50% funded by Industry, 50% by EPSRC) is available for October 2016 at the School of Chemistry, University of Nottingham to develop technologies against bacterial biofilms.

Biofilms are accumulations of microorganisms embedded in a complex matrix (made up from exopolysaccharides, proteins, DNA and lipids) and adherent to solid biological or non-biotic surfaces. Biofilms are a major problem in many industrial and domestic domains, as well as to human and animal health resulting in heavy costs in industrial cleaning and maintenance, in farming and in medicine. Developing technologies to inhibit bacterial adherence would be a major breakthrough with diverse applications across different global industries including agriculture and medicine.

Our recent research has led to the development of the QPLEX/TYPLEX compounds, which although do not have bactericidal or bacteriostatic activities, are potent inhibitors of biofilm formation in different bacteria species. Our technology has been licensed by Akeso Biomedical Inc and is protected by 2 patents:


The available PhD project involves working with academic and industrial collaborators towards developing the QPLEX /TYPLEX (Fe complexes) technology. The technology is already under development as an anti-campylobacter solution in the poultry industry (see recent announcement by the FSA).

The EPSRC CDT in Sustainable Chemistry is a 4-year programme and the first year of the involves attending lectures and specifically designed training courses as developing research project (writing a literature review and official project proposal) and undertaking a pilot research project.

About the EPSRC CDT in Sustainable Chemistry

The EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Sustainable Chemistry was developed in collaboration with industry and as a partnership of several disciplines, including Chemistry, Engineering, Biosciences and Business. The main objective of the Centre is to provide the students not only with first class research training, but also technical, theoretical and entrepreneurial competences to equip them for a leading career in industry.

Why choose us?

  • Innovative training approach and continuous professional development
  • Interdisciplinary exposure
  • Peer support network
  • Generous travel and consumables budget
  • Funded 3-month placement in industry or another higher education institution

About the candidate and how to apply:

Ideally the candidates are expected to hold at least an upper second class honours degree with a recognizable amount of chemical science content, ideally from a 4-year undergraduate course (MSci, MChem, MEng, etc.) or equivalent qualification. This qualification could include Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Process Engineering, Food Science, Natural Sciences, Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Pharmacy or other first-degree topics with a directed input to the theme of sustainability and sustainable chemicals processing.

For more information please visit: suschem-nottingham-cdt.ac.uk/

Informal queries may be addressed to: [email protected].

To apply, please complete the University of Nottingham Application Form quoting course code F19N and CDT Application form, which can be found on suschem-nottingham-cdt.ac.uk/index.php/apply

Application deadline: 15 August 2016

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