PhD Studentship: Engineering Novel Enzymes for Industry

University of East Anglia - School of Chemistry

Start Date:  1st October 2017

No. of positions available: 1

Supervisor: Dr Andrew Hemmings

Project description:

Phytic acid is the major source of inorganic phosphate needed for animal growth and is found in the grains, oil seeds and beans of common animal feeds. However, animals do not produce the enzymes (phytases) necessary to digest phytic acid and as a result their feeds are commonly supplemented with engineered enzymes. This active area of discovery and engineering feeds an animal feed enzyme market expected to rise in value to around $1.2bn by 2018.

An exciting PhD research studentship has become available in the groups of Drs Andrew Hemmings (School of Chemistry) and Charles Brearley (School of Biological Sciences) to study a novel class of phytases. The successful candidate will play a central role in attempts to engineer the catalytic and physiochemical properties of these enzymes for use as animal feed additives. To achieve this they will receive training in modern methods of molecular and structural biology, analytical biochemistry and computational modelling. The research will make extensive use of local facilities including the Centre for Structural and Molecular Biochemistry (CMSB) and external facilities such as the synchrotron at the Diamond Light Source. Supervision will be provided by Dr Andrew Hemmings (School of Chemistry) and Dr Charles Brearley (School of Biological Sciences) in collaboration with our industrial partner.

Person specification: Suitably qualified individuals will have a strong interest in protein chemistry and/or bioanalytical science and will hold, or expect to hold, a first or good upper second class honours undergraduate degree (or equivalent) from any of a range of disciplines including, but not restricted to biochemistry, biological chemistry and biological sciences.

Funding notes: Full Studentships cover a stipend (RCUK rate: £14,296pa – 2016/7), research costs and tuition fees at UK/EU rate, and are available to UK and EU students who meet the UK residency requirements.

Students from EU countries who do not meet the UK residency requirements may be eligible for a fees-only award. Students in receipt of a fees-only award will be eligible for a maintenance stipend awarded by the NRPDTP Bioscience Doctoral Scholarships, which when combined will equal a full studentship. To be eligible students must meet the EU residency requirements.

Details on eligibility for funding on the BBSRC website: 

Share this PhD
  Share by Email   Print this job   More sharing options
We value your feedback on the quality of our adverts. If you have a comment to make about the overall quality of this advert, or its categorisation then please send us your feedback
Advert information

Type / Role:



South East England