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PhD project. GPCR on-a-chip: quantum biosensor for drug discovery

The goal of this project is to develop quantum biosensors for drug discovery at single molecule level.

Quantum sensing detects changes in motion and electric and magnetic fields at the atomic level. It holds promise to revolutionise all areas of science and technology that is reliant on sensing – from GPS navigation to medical imaging to biomolecular sensing. Nitrogen-vacancy (NV) diamonds are the most promising single atom quantum sensors for biomolecular interactions. The physics of environment sensing is the same as for EPR and NMR but with the sensitivity at a single molecule level due to the optical detection of signals.

The project focuses on coupling GPCRs to NV-nanodiamonds to[MM(1] observe effects of ligand binding on their conformation, and developing a detection system on a chip using miniaturised metalenses to couple the flow chamber directly to the sCMOS detector. Ultimately, the results of this project could lead to development of highly parallel screening microfluidics devices to transform drug discovery.

The project combines multiple technical developments on both GPCR expression and protein engineering and chemical biology, as well as progress in optically detected magnetic resonance and metalens production, with the unique combination of supervisors’ expertise provided (Melissa Mathers/Dmitry Veprintsev/Elline Koers/Mitchell Kenney). The student will be embedded in the Centre of Membrane Proteins and Receptors, one of internationally leading centres for GPCR research and a vibrant community of over 50 PhD students and postdocs, and within the Biophotonics group at the School of Engineering at the University of Nottingham.

For application details please see

Deadline 17.01.2023

For more information please see and contact

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