Project code



School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

Start dates


Application deadline

Open all year round

This is a self-funded, 3 year full-time or 6 year part-time PhD studentship, starting in October 2020 or February 2021. The project is supervised by Dr Roger Draheim.

The goal of this PhD project is to implement a biological antibiotic screening platform within our School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences. Your work will help to reduce the cost required for antibiotic discovery, with the ultimate aim of becoming the de facto standard within the pharmaceutical industry.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is becoming a major problem in healthcare, causing complications in the treatment of the diseases caused by many clinical bacterial pathogens. In the European Union alone, antibiotic-resistant infections kill nearly 25,000 patients and costs £1.5 billion per year. The Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the United Kingdom termed antibiotic resistance “a major area of concern”, and proposed its inclusion on the National Security Risk Assessment, which priorities major threats to national security.

The work will include:

  • training and experience across biological science disciplines, including: molecular biology, microbiology, biochemistry, high-throughput screening and collection and management of large data sets (i.e. big data).
  • access to training resources available from our Graduate School, to improve presentation skills, time-management and project organisation skills, as well as reviewing literature, thesis writing, data analysis, statistics, and more

The CMO suggested that the UK government facilitate global action, especially the development of novel antibiotics. However, the cost of the research, development and clinical testing required to bring an antibiotic to market, coupled with the fact that they are only used for a very short period of time by patients, makes them very unattractive to pharmaceutical companies.

This PhD project addresses this shortfall in research, and tackles this growing problem.


Visit the research subject area page for fees and funding information for this project.

Self-funded PhD students only. PhD full-time and part-time courses are eligible for the Government Doctoral Loan.

Please note: all students must also pay bench fees of £10,000 p/a.

Entry Requirements

  • A good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject or a master’s degree in an appropriate subject.
  • Exceptionally, equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will be considered. All applicants are subject to interview.
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

Make an enquiry

For administrative and admissions enquiries please contact

Informal enquiries are welcome and can be made to Dr Roger Draheim (

When you are ready to apply, please follow the 'Apply now' link on the Pharmacy, Pharmacology and Biomedical Sciences PhD subject area page and select the link for the relevant intake. Make sure you submit a personal statement, proof of your degrees and grades, details of two referees, proof of your English language proficiency and an up-to-date CV. Our ‘How to Apply’ page offers further guidance on the PhD application process. 

October start

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February start

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