New PhD project opportunity: A synthetic biology toolbox for electronic control of gene expression

Funded by the Leverhulme Doctoral Scholarship Programme in Cellular Bionics – 3 year PhD studentships

Supervisors: Dr Thomas Ouldridge | Dr Danny O'Hare | Dr Rodrigo Ledesma

The 20th Century was characterized by the growth of a myriad of technologies based on digital electronics. Engineering of biological systems has the potential to be similarly revolutionary in the 21st Century. Before this dream can be realized, however, precise, programmable control of complex biological systems needs to become simpler, and the interface with other engineered technologies needs to be made more robust. In this project, the student will develop a modular system for interfacing electronic signals with engineered cells. The proposed mechanism utilizes electrochemical oxidation and reduction of redox molecules at electrodes, and the subsequent activation of redox-sensitive transcription factors in the vicinity of those electrodes. The electrogenetic module will allow implementation of precise spatio-temporal control of biological systems from a smartphone or personal computer, with applications in bioproduction, biomaterials, biosensors, diagnostics and more.  

UK/EU students eligible for full funding support (stipend and fees). For more details and to apply, please see details hereThe position is open on a rolling basis; we will assess applications that arrive before 28th Feb as a group. Please email me directly if you are planning to submit, so that I can ensure have your paperwork. 


We're always happy to hear from undergraduates, graduates and Postdocs that are excited by the research of the group. We will be offering several projects for MEng and MSc students, so please check them out. For excellent graduate students, it is possible to apply for funding through the Department or the College , so contact Tom if interested. Tom is also potentially able to support applications for independent Postdoctoral positions, such as Imperial's excellent Research Fellowships that he himself benefited from, or Newton Fellowships for international visiting researchers.