University of Cambridge

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BBSRC Doctoral Training Programme-funded PhD (Fixed Term)

Development of Next-Generation Antibiotics

The introduction of antibiotics was a turning point in the history of medicine and has saved countless lives. Unfortunately, the use of these wonder drugs is accompanied by the emergence of antibiotic resistant pathogenic bacteria, which are difficult to eradicate.

A BBSRC Doctoral Training Programme-funded PhD position is now available up to 4 years in the Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge, in the research group led by Dr Hendrik van Veen. This project will focus on the ATP-binding cassette exporter MsbA, the activity of which is essential for outer membrane biogenesis and viability of many Gram-negative pathogenic bacteria including Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Vibrio cholerae, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Yersinia pestis and Acinetobacter baumannii. To develop next-generation antibiotics, we aim to disrupt growth of these bacteria by generating novel selective inhibitors of MsbA.

Applicants should be highly motivated, enthusiastic individuals, capable of thinking and working independently, and should have outstanding presentation and writing skills. Furthermore, applicants should have or shortly expect to obtain a minimum of a UK II.i Honours Degree (or EU equivalent) in Pharmacology, Biochemistry, Chemistry or a related subject. Experience in biochemical and functional analyses of proteins and/or chemical synthesis would be very useful. Competition is intense and successful applicants are likely to demonstrate high academic achievements. The start date is October 1, 2018.

Further information can be found on our website at:

Applications from agencies will not be considered.

Candidates should submit a C.V., a brief supporting statement (two sides maximum), a list of publications, including the names and addresses of two referees, to to arrive no later than 5pm on December 15, 2017.

If you have any questions about this vacancy or the application process, please contact Amparo Saez (

Please quote reference PL13917 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

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