Self-funded PhD opportunities

Design, Synthesis & Biochemical Evaluation of Isoflavone Derivatives with Enhanced Potential for Therapeutic Use

  • Application end date: Applications accepted all year round
  • Funding Availability: Self-funded PhD students only
  • Department: School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences
  • PhD Supervisor: Dr Karen Ball

The purpose of this study is to design, synthesize and biochemically evaluate isoflavone derivatives with enhanced potential for therapeutic use. Results from biochemical evaluation will feed back into the design process to enhance our understanding of structure activity relationship.

An efficient synthesis for this class of compound has already been developed and can be adapted and developed by the student to diversify the range of compounds made. Once purity has been confirmed, compounds synthesised will be evaluated to assess for maintenance or improvement of biological activity. Initial biochemical evaluation will include; assessing the effects of the compounds on the growth of oestrogen dependant breast cancer cells, and carrying out binding assays for oestrogen receptors. Biochemical evaluation may also include assessing the liabilities of compounds synthesised in terms of metabolism (initially in vitro metabolism) and potential toxicity (MTT and SRB assays). Chemical synthesis, NMR, IR, GC-MS, HPLC, and cell culture work are some of the main techniques the student will utilise in these studies.

In addition you will have access to a skills development program run by the university’s Graduate School. The experimental and analytical skills developed during this project will prepare you well for a future career in academia or industry.

Suitable for applicants with a good degree in a medicinal chemistry or biochemistry field.

Research Group Web Site http://www.port.ac.uk/school-of-pharmacy-and-biomedical-sciences/research/

Supervisor(s) Dr Karen Ball

Funding Status: Self funded - University fees (currently, £13,100 for International Students and £4,052 for Home and EU students) + (plus additional bench fees of £6,000 per annum).

Search terms: Medicinal chemistry, Isoflavones, breast cancer, synthesis, biochemical evaluation.