Develop engineering routes for reliable, reproducible, and large-scale production of nanomedicine

Many medicines are highly effective but face difficulties in clinical applications such as possessing poor water solubility, low stability, short blood circulation half-life, and high toxicity. To address these issues, nanotechnology has been widely adopted to advance drug delivery systems for improved therapeutic efficacy and reduced side effects. Although promising research results have been consistently reported, we still need to overcome several challenges to move forward the applications of nanomedicine. The important barriers include batch-to-batch variation of the physical and chemical properties of nanomedicine, lack of ability of large-scale production, and extremely low delivery efficiency to disease sites.

The project to be carried out in the Institute for Bioengineering at the University of Edinburgh is going to develop new engineering routes (e.g., microfluidic synthesis) for fabrication of nanomedicine and the subsequent surface modification. A wide range of characterisation tools will be employed for characterisation and in vitro & in vivo application test of the nanostructures. Except drug delivery, nanomaterials for intracellular sensing can also be tested.

To undertake this research, we are seeking a highly motivated candidate with established hands-on experience in nanomaterials synthesis and cell biology.

Our track record in this work:

  1. X Chen, WJ Zhang, Diamond nanostructures for drug delivery, bioimaging, and biosensing, Chemical Society Reviews, 46, 734-760, 2017.
  2. L Yan, MJ Zhou, XJ Zhang, LB Huang, W Chen, VAL Roy, WJ Zhang, X Chen, A novel type of aqueous dispersible ultrathin layered double hydroxide nanosheets for in vivo bioimaging and drug delivery, ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 9(39), 34185-34193, 2017.
  3. JF Zhang, YN Li, FF An, XH Zhang, X Chen, CS Lee, Preparation and size control of sub-100 nm pure nanodrugs, Nano Letters, 15(1), 313-318, 2015.
  4. L Yan, JF Zhang, CS Lee, X Chen, Micro- and nanotechnologies for intracellular delivery, Small, 10(22), 4487-4504, 2014.
  5. L Yan, W Chen, XY Zhu, LB Huang, ZG Wang, GY Zhu, VAL Roy, KN Yu, X Chen, Folic acid conjugated self-assembled layered double hydroxides nanoparticles for high-efficacy-targeted drug delivery, Chemical Communications, 49, 10938-10940, 2013.

Closing Date: 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Engineering School Logo
Engineering School Logo

Principal Supervisor: 


Minimum entry qualification - an Honours degree at 2:1 or above (or International equivalent) in chemical engineering, chemistry, materials science, biomedical engineering or cell biology, possibly supported by an MSc Degree.

Further information on English language requirements for EU/Overseas applicants.


EPSRC funding is available to cover tuition fees and stipend are available for Home/EU students, but applications are also welcomed from self-funded students, or students who are applying for scholarships from the University of Edinburgh or elsewhere.

Further information and other funding options.

Informal Enquiries: