Department of Biochemistry Postgraduate Studentships
In collaboration with the Medical Sciences Division and Colleges, the Department awards a number of Postgraduate Research Studentships each year. These are full awards that will cover University and College Fees and funding for living expenses (at least equivalent to the UKRI national minimum doctoral stipend). All applicants that apply by the early January deadline will automatically be considered for one of these awards.
In addition to Department of Biochemistry Studentships, we occassionally advertise studentships that are associated with a specific Group Leader or Project. Details about these studentships will be added below as they become available.
Synthetic biology engineering of ultra-stable proteins to promote gastrointestinal immunity
In the lab of Professor Mark Howarth
Control of the immune system by injected recombinant proteins has led to great breakthroughs, from checkpoint inhibitors in cancer therapy to subunit vaccines for infectious disease. However, the hostile environment of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, including extreme pH and high concentration of proteases, has prevented the general use of targeted protein therapeutics there. Using synthetic biology approaches, we have engineered ultra-stable proteins which can tolerate these challenging conditions. In this project we will develop this new platform, optimising affinity, specificity and pharmacology (including the protein’s distribution through the GI tract and general circulation). We will apply these novel targeting tools to counteract pathogens which downregulate host immunity in the GI tract. Establishing such a robust targeting platform should have broad applications for disease diagnosis and maintaining GI health against infectious or autoimmune challenges.