BBSRC-DTP CASE Studentship: Optimization and development of functionally active anti-Cdc42/Ras peptides

University of Cambridge - Department of Biochemistry

A fully funded 4-year BBSRC-DTP Industrial CASE PhD studentship is available, commencing in October 2017, to develop peptide-based therapeutics designed to target Ras-driven cancers. The project builds on a considerable body of data generated in the academic research group led by Drs Darerca Owen and Helen Mott investigating the structure, thermodynamics and functions of small G protein-effector complexes, which has led to the development of candidate peptide therapeutics. The aim of the BBSRC-DTP Industry CASE awards is to provide PhD students with a first class, challenging training experience within the context of a mutually beneficial collaboration between academic and non-academic partner organizations. This project is partnered by MedImmune, a world-leading company specializing in antibody and peptide therapeutics, based just outside Cambridge. The work will use MedImmune's considerable experience to optimize peptides for use as cellular probes and as lead therapeutic molecules. Candidate peptides will be tested in the Owen/Mott laboratory using a range of biophysical and biochemical assays. Those peptides with desired properties will be taken into cell-based assays to test their effects on Ras signalling. The project will provide a thorough training in a wide range of state-of-the-art techniques: advanced peptide chemistry and high-throughput screening techniques; molecular biology, protein biochemistry, biophysics and NMR for protein-protein interaction analysis; cell culture assays e.g. cell proliferation, anchorage-independent growth and focus formation assays.

The successful candidate will join the group led by Drs Darerca Owen and Helen Mott ( in the Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge and will be part of the Antibody Discovery and Protein Engineering (ADPE) department at MedImmune, working alongside a skilled team of scientists in a dynamic biotech environment, supervised by Dr Jeff Revell ( 

Applicants should hold or be about to achieve a First or Upper-Second (2.i) class degree in a relevant subject. BBSRC studentships are available to UK nationals and EU students who meet the UK residency requirements. Further information about eligibility for Research Council UK funding can be found on the BBSRC website:

The successful candidate will receive a stipend paid at RCUK rates for the 4 year duration of the award (£14,296 per annum for 2016-17) and in addition will benefit from a £2,500 per annum stipend enhancement; fees will be met in full for EU nationals.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 4 years in the first instance.

Applications should be sent to Dr Darerca Owen (, as soon as possible, and at the latest by 16th December 2016, enclosing a cover letter, a detailed curriculum vitae and the names and contact details of two academic referees. Interviews will be held in January 2017.

Please quote reference PH10700 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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