Project 1：PhD Scholarship-Cell-free biosynthesis of platform chemicals from organic waste
The enzyme-catalysed transformation (biocatalysis) of cheap, renewable substrates into valuable bulk or specialty chemicals is a promising technology for sustainable and green manufacturing. Advances in enzyme expression systems, enzyme engineering, in silico modelling and prediction of enzyme kinetics has facilitated the assembly of enzyme into synthetic and highly efficient production pathways. This concept has recently been implemented to design enzyme pathways in a cell-free context as opposed to the traditional approach of utilising microbial hosts. Cell-free biotechnology is one of the promising approaches that offer complementary advantages to in vivo metabolic engineering, allowing for high control over reaction conditions, enzyme ratios and pathway flux.
We have recently established two novel cell-free multi-enzyme pathways for the bioconversion of renewable organic waste into valuable bio-based building blocks for industrial applications. This PhD project will deal with the combination, optimisation and/or modification of the developed pathways to improve substrate utilisation and product yields. The project will use an array of biochemical methods such as: discovery or design of new enzymes, enzyme engineering, high throughput flux analysis, kinetic modelling and bioprocess engineering.
The successful student will join a dynamic and motivated team with a multidisciplinary approach to research. The ideal candidate must have a strong background in molecular biology and/or synthetic biology, biotechnology or biochemistry. Practical expertise in protein expression and purification, enzyme kinetics and characterisation as well as HPLC analysis is highly desirable. In addition, the applicant will have a demonstrated aptitude for undertaking and managing laboratory work independently, an understanding of the field, and excellent communication skills.
Project 2：PhD Scholarship- Development of a highthroughput screening technique for selection of functional peptides
Functional peptides have been reported with several properties including, anti-microbial, anti-cancer and solid binding functions. Solid-binding peptides are of special interest for several applications due to their selectivity and binding affinity towards surfaces of a diverse range of solid materials (e.g. metals, semiconductors, carbon materials, and polymers). Several methods have been established for the discovery of new functional peptides. However, most methods are laborious and time-consuming. The aim of this project is to develop a robust alternative high throughput screening method for the selection of functional peptides for several applications (nanomedicine, nanobiotechnology, synthetic biology). The study will require the construction of diverse peptide libraries within a selected size range. The libraries will be screened against different ligand targets. Positive peptides will be identified by mass spectrometry (e.g. LC/MS), and further characterised using biophysical and biochemical techniques. To enable easy and high throughput screening, this technology will be converted into a semi-automated method using auto-sampling and sample preparation robotics
CANDIDATE REQUIREMENTS： The successful student will join a dynamic and motivated team with a multidisciplinary approach to research. The ideal candidate must have a strong background in protein chemistry, biochemistry, physical biochemistry, or related field. Practical expertise in Mass Spectrometry (e.g. LC/MS, MS) and high-through analysis are highly desirable. In addition, the applicant will have a demonstrated aptitude for undertaking and managing laboratory work independently, an understanding of the field, and excellent communication skills.
Macquarie University International Scholarship Program. The deadline for submission is July 31, 2019. More information can be found here: https://www.mq.edu.au/research/p ... national_main_round
Please apply ONLY if you have:
• Completed a 2-years Master of Research and examined Master’s Thesis
• Excellent academic records
• Evidence of peer-reviewed research activity, such as publications and/or conference presentations
• Proof of English Proficiency either through an academic IELTS or a TOEFL test. IELTS (academic) overall score 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each band. You must have passed your English test before submission on July 31. Further information can be found at: https://www.mq.edu.au/?a=519657
Send your detailed CV and transcripts for assessment to: A/Prof Anwar Sunna (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For more information visit www.sunnalab.org