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PhD Studentship in 3D Bio-printing. The Development of Storable Cell-laden Bio-inks for Tissue Engineering

Newcastle University

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: £14,777 + covers tuition fees
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 10th August 2018
Closes: 7th September 2018
Reference: GM007

Value of award

100% of UK/EU tuition fees and annual living expenses of £14,777 (full award at 2018/19 rate).

Number of awards


Start date and duration

1 October 2018 for 3 years.


Over the last decade, progress in three dimensional (3D) bioprinting has advanced considerably. The technology presents huge potential in drug discovery and tissue engineering.

To realise successful clinical translation, biologistics needs to be considered. Common to cell-based therapies, there are great challenges in storing and distributing cells from sites of manufacture to the clinic.

One of the most important components for successful 3D printing is the ‘bioink’. This is the material containing cells that make up the printed structure. The favoured materials for bioinks used in extrusion-based bioprinting are hydrogels, particularly the natural biopolymer alginate.

In addition to its favourable properties for 3D bioprinting, Atelerix Ltd has shown alginate to preserve cell viability and functionality during room temperature storage and shipment.

You will join a vibrant tissue engineering lab at Newcastle University to provide world-leading expertise in cell encapsulation and 3D tissue bio-printing. You will learn a range of standard and advanced biological techniques, including:

  • atomic force microscopy
  • confocal microscopy
  • immuno blotting
  • QPCR
  • stem cell culture
  • extrusion-based 3D printing
  • the growth of cells using functionalised biomaterials 
  • hypothermic storage of cells in collaboration with Atelerix Ltd.


ERDF/SME (Atelerix Ltd)

Name of supervisor(s)

  • Professor CJ Connon, Newcastle University
  • Dr M. McLean, Atelerix Ltd
  • Dr S. Swioklo, Atelerix Ltd

Eligibility Criteria

You must have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 honours degree, or international equivalent, in a subject relating to biomedicine or biomaterials.

A further qualification, such as an MRes, is advantageous.

The award is available to UK/EU applicants only.

How to apply

You can apply through the University’s postgraduate applicant portal.

Only mandatory fields need to be completed. However, you will need to include the following information:

  • insert the programme code 8300F * in the programme of study section 
  • select PhD in the Faculty of Medical Sciences – Institute of Genetic Medicine Research as the programme of study 
  • insert the studentship code GM007 in the studentship/partnership reference field 
  • attach a covering letter and CV. Your covering letter must state:
    • the title of the studentship
    • the studentship reference code GM007
    • how your interests and experience relate to the project.
  • attach degree transcripts and certificates. If English is not your first language, you need to attach a copy of your English language qualifications

* The applicant portal will only allow one application using the programme code 8300F. If you are applying for two or more projectsusing this code then you will need to email our Postgraduate Admissions Service at with the following:

  • your application number (from the first project application that you submitted online)
  • the second studentship code and its corresponding title
  • a two-page covering letter for the second project

Our Postgraduate Admissions Service will forward this information to the relevant academic selector in the Faculty of Medical Sciences.


Professor Che Connon
Institute for Genetic Medicine

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