Graphene the “wonder material” has received considerable interest especially in electronics and recently increased attention in the biomedical sciences, with potential applications from gene and drug delivery through to sensing. The majority of the work has focused on graphene oxide (GO) due to its inherent hydrophilicity and the sparse work that has been performed on pristine graphene. Beyond the limited characterisation of the surface chemistry of the graphene oxide flakes in the literature or toxicity questions, other aspects remain poorly studied such as the preparation of stable graphene suspensions for drug delivery.
The project will thus focus on the preparation of stable drug graphene suspensions and consider relevant excipients such as GRAS (generally recognised as safe) excipients to prepare formulations acceptable according to international guidelines. The project will build upon previous data collected by our laboratory; it will evaluate the ability to stabilise suspensions using amino acids, determine appropriate formulations to minimise aggregation and assess the stability of these particles when entering in contact with physiological liquids. A range of experimental and computational chemistry approaches will be used to characterise and optimise formulations.
The successful applicant will be part of the Graduate School Training Programme (GSTP). Training will provided in a wide range of relevant techniques such as using various microscopies, spectroscopy, flow cytometry, computational chemistry, using GPUs and high performance computing.
Candidates are expected to hold, or expect to obtain, a minimum upper-second (or equivalent) honours degree in engineering, biochemistry, biophysics or relevant physical sciences subject. A Masters qualification in a similar area would be a significant advantage.
This 3-year full-time PhD is open to candidates able to provide evidence of self-arranged funding/ sponsorship and is due to commence in January 2017 onwards.
Any enquiries relating to the project and/or suitability should be directed to Dr Pluen ([email protected]
). Applications are invited on an on-going basis but early expression of interest is encouraged.
This project has a Band 2 fee. Details of our different fee bands can be found on our website. For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website. Informal enquiries may be made directly to the primary supervisor.