Conformational Switches: the Key to Novel Stimuli Responsive Materials (MATTHEWSS_U18SCI)

University of East Anglia
September 11 2017
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Molecules and materials that respond to their environment are one of the most innovative ways of preparing smart systems for applications in sensing, molecule storage and drug delivery. Designing and building systems that can be easily controlled and tailored to the applications is an important challenge and this project aims to solve it by harnessing conformational switching.

The PhD student will work with an established switching molecule based on a calix[4]arene and develop it into a range of smart materials with different responsive properties. This will involve exploring how structure effects switching, finding new triggers for switching and developing new switchable macrocycles for a range of application including the controlled release of pharmaceuticals.

The project will enable the successful candidate to receive a highly interdisciplinary and unique training covering organic synthesis and physical characterisation; gaining synthetic skills for both small molecules and polymeric systems as well as developing and applying physical methods including advanced solution and solid state NMR, powder and single crystal X-ray crystallisation and calorimetry.

The student will work with three specialist supervisors and join a vibrant research environment within the School of Pharmacy at UEA. You will become part of the medicinal chemistry and pharmaceutical materials groups and be part of the Next Generation Therapeutics Research Theme http://( Additionally the student will receive research skills training through the Science Graduate School throughout their PhD and will have the opportunity to present their work nationally and internationally.

We are looking for an enthusiastic student with a 1st or 2:1 class degree in chemistry, materials or pharmacy and a desire to work across traditional scientific disciplines. The challenging nature of the project combined with the training you receive will open up a wide range of careers for you.

Interviews will be held w/c 22 January 2018.

Funding notes

This PhD project is in a Faculty of Science competition for funded studentships.  These studentships are funded for 3 years and comprise home/EU fees, an annual stipend of £14,553 and £1000 per annum to support research training.  Overseas applicants may apply but they are required to fund the difference between home/EU and overseas tuition fees (in 2017/18 the difference is £13,805 for the Schools of CHE, PHA & MTH (Engineering), and £10,605 for CMP & MTH but fees are subject to an annual increase).


This job comes from a partnership with Science Magazine and Euraxess

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