MPhil/PhD Scholarship Computational studies of lipase-drug formulation interactions

(Ref: VCS-SCI-02-13)


Lipids are molecules that make up the building blocks of the structure and function of living cells. They are also used as delivery vehicles to increase the systemic absorption and distribution of a wide range of drugs. In this project, we aim to use computational chemistry techniques to study how different structures of lipids interact with drugs within the delivery systems and how a family of lipid-digesting enzymes, named lipases, mediates the release of drugs from lipidic drug formulations. This is an exciting research project which will enable the PhD student to work across interfaces between computational chemistry, enzyme catalysis, lipid biochemistry and drug formulation. The knowledge obtained from the project will help to optimise formulation design to achieve precise control of drug release at the site of digestion and absorption. Along the PhD project, the student will acquire expertise in quantum mechanical (QM) calculations, molecular mechanics (MM)-based simulations and the combined QM/MM approaches which have wide applications within the academic research field of biochemistry and the pharmaceutical industry. 

The successful candidate will receive a £13726 bursary (years 2 and 3 linked to RCUK Doctoral Stipend rate) plus a contribution towards tuition fees of up to the equivalent of the university’s Home/EU rate for the duration of their scholarship, subject to performance.

Applicants must hold a First Class or Upper Second Class Honours Bachelor’s or Master’s degree (UK or UK equivalent) in a relevant discipline. 

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Applications are sought by the indicated closing date for starting in September 2013.

For further information please contact the supervisor: Dr Jiayun Pang, 020 8331 9829.

For additional information about the studentship and links to the application form please go to: 

The application form should be completed and returned to: and include: a comprehensive CV and a one page covering letter explaining your interest in the project and how it relates to past experience and present motivations. Attachments should be in PDF or Word format.

The closing date for applications is 12.00 UTC on Tuesday 18 June 2013

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