Research Fellow

University of Birmingham - School of Chemical Engineering

Duration: 24 months

A Research Fellow position is available from November 2017 for a two-year ERC-funded project entitled “Surface-Based Molecular Imprinting for Glycoprotein Recognition” to work on the development of nanoparticles with well control chemistry for specific detection of sugar chains in glycoproteins. We also aim to integrate switching units on the nanoparticles with the purpose of facilitating sensing.

Glycans, which exist in either as membrane-bound glycoconjugates or as secreted molecules, are intimately involved in various physiological and pathophysiological events, including cancer. Yet, selective glycan recognition remains a daunting task due to their inherent diversity and complexity. The aim of this project is to generate nanoparticles with high selectivity for glycans, with ultimate goal of using such nanoparticles to detect diseases such as cancer at early stage and in a more accurate manner. Among other aspects, the project involves organic synthesis, nanoparticle synthesis and comprehensive characterization. Using molecular imprinting concepts, the nanoparticles will be tailored with multivalent carbohydrate receptors to produce very high affinity binding sites and sharply discriminate between different glycans, including those containing multi-antennary structures, sialylation and fucosylation.

Applications are invited from a suitably qualified postdoctoral research scientist to develop new paradigms and breakthrough methodologies based on organic chemistry, nanochemistry, supramolecular chemistry and biochemistry to create nanoparticle surfaces with molecularly well-defined chemical, physical and, in particular, biological properties. The postdoctoral fellow will join a productive research group within the School of Chemical Engineering at the University of Birmingham.

Applicant should have a PhD in a related subject and should have prior knowledge, experience and achievements in either organic chemistry and/or nanoparticle synthesis and characterization.

Informal enquiries can be directed to Professor. Paula M Mendes via email:

To download the details of this position and submit an electronic application online please click on the Apply Online button below, please quote Job Ref 58007 in all enquiries.

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Midlands of England