University of Cambridge

Department of Engineering

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A position exists, for a Research Assistant/Associate to design, fabricate and validate implantable devices that deliver chemotherapy to brain tumours, as part of a broader EPSRC IRC project to explore the use of new technologies to combat hard-to-treat cancers.

Chemotherapy drugs have poor penetration through the blood brain barrier (BBB) leading to sub-therapeutic concentrations in brain tumours. Therapeutic strategies that control drug release spatially and temporarily represent a significant step forwards in terms of reducing side effects and improving treatment efficacy and will thus have significant clinical impact. Electrophoretic drug delivery devices, which use electric fields to enhance drug transport, represent one such strategy. The aim of this project is to make implantable electrophoretic drug delivery devices and validate them in animal models of brain cancer, generating the necessary preclinical data to support translation.

The post holder will be located in West Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, UK.

Key responsibilities and duties: Device design and fabrication, Device Optimization and in Vivo Validation (see the Further Particulars for more information).

The successful candidate will have (or be close to obtaining) a PhD or equivalent in Engineering/Physical sciences; experience in experimental techniques in at least two of the following: Convection enhanced delivery, Microdialysis; in Vivo Validation or Microfabrication; ability to function within a large team, coordinate with multiple partners and communicate across disciplines; will have collaborated with experimental oncology/neuroscience groups, have experience with in vivo models of cancer and a strong publication record in relevant journals.

Appointment at Research Associate level is dependent on having a PhD. Those who have submitted but not yet received their PhD will be appointed at Research Assistant level, which will be amended to Research Associate once the PhD has been awarded.

Research Assistant: £26,243 – £30,395; Research Associate: £32,236 – £39,609.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 24 months in the first instance.

Once an offer of employment has been accepted, the successful candidate will be required to undergo a health assessment and a security check.

Click the ‘Apply’ button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

Please upload your CV and a covering letter in the Upload section of the online application. If you upload any additional documents which have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application. Please submit your application by midnight on the closing date.

For queries of a technical nature related to the role please contact George Malliaras ( For queries relating to the application process, please contact Kirsty Shepherd (; Tel: 01223 748 380).

Please quote reference NM19963 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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About Department of Biochemistry, University of Cambridge

The Department of Biochemistry is a member of the School of the Biological Sciences and one of the largest departments in the University of Cambridge. The Department is especially strong in research with investigators of international standing in a wide range of disciplines including structural biology, molecular enzymology, cell signalling and control of gene expression, molecular microbiology, plant molecular biology and bioenergy, cancer and cardiovascular biology. We also have a strong cohort of independent research fellows with funding from the Wellcome Trust, British Heart Foundation, BBSRC and MRC. The Department houses multiple core facilities funded by Wellcome Trust, BBSRC and MRC to support modern biomolecular research, including 800MHz NMR, state-of-the-art X-ray crystallography, protein chemistry, mass spectrometry, metabolomics and advanced services for protein and nucleic acid sequencing. In collaboration with the Department of Genetics we have also established the Cambridge Systems Biology Centre, which hosts genomics, proteomics and associated bioinformatics. We also participate in the Wellcome Trust-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute , the Cambridge Cancer Centre and other major research initiatives.