Development of thermal sensors for the monitoring of antimicrobial resistance
The World Health Organization recently stated that antimicrobial resistant (AMR) bacteria pose a fundamental threat to human health. Over 3 million European patients suffer from hospital acquired infections and approximately 50,000 patients die annually from these infections.
Current gold standard techniques to determine bacterial strains are time-consuming. These include either conventional culture-based assays, which require a minimum of 48 hours to obtain a result, or genotyping-based methods, which depend upon access to expensive laboratory infrastructure and have a measurement time of ~2h. This proposal would look at the development of polymer-based sensor platforms, prepared by electropolymerization, that would reduce measurement time (<15 min). In addition, since we are using patented thermal sensing technology, this method is easy to operate and can be integrated in a portable device.
In the context of this project, we will build on our recent work (papers available website www.marloespeeters.nl) on Molecularly Imprinted Polymers – MIPs- which are synthetic recognition elements with high affinity for their target molecules. The work as part of an EPSRC grant will strengthen links with our partner institute, Maastricht University (the Netherlands). We will measure the response of bacteria and antibiotics to our sensors using patented thermal technology and evaluate both buffered and more complex (blood, urine, waste water, etc) samples.
Parameters that will be considered include selectivity of the system, limits of detection, accuracy and precision of the sensors. The system will be benchmarked using immunoassays and to demonstrate how we can improve to current state of the art biomarker sensor systems.
Specific Requirements of the Project
You should have, or be in the final stages of, a PhD degree in chemistry, chemical engineering or a materials related subject. You should be keen to learn new experimental techniques, publish papers and present their work at conferences. Experience in electrochemical detection, polymerization techniques, and work in the area of (thermal) biosensors would be beneficial but not essential. The project will be full-time for 2 years.
Informal enquiries can be made to Dr Marloes Peeters, firstname.lastname@example.org
To apply for this role please upload your CV and covering letter (detailing how you meet the person specification) to the online portal.
Posted on 21 March 2018 at 18:10:10 by Marloes Peeters