PhD Studentship - Design, synthesis and Evaluation of Novel Small Molecule Modulators of Cell Signa

United Kingdom
Nov 28, 2016
Mar 31, 2017
Organization Type
University and College
Full Time
PhD Studentship – Design, synthesis and Evaluation of Novel Small Molecule Modulators of Cell Signalling in Cancer


Location: Highfield Campus

Closing Date:  Friday 31 March 2017

Reference: 812116EB

PhD Supervisor: Dr Matthias Baud                       

Unregulated cell signalling results in uncontrolled cell proliferation, and constitutes a hallmark of cancer. In this context, small molecule modulators of cell signalling continue to play a preponderant part in anticancer drug discovery. The Baud group group focuses on several important signalling pathways playing key roles in cancer progression, including the p53 and Wnt signalling pathways. These pathways play a pivotal role in normal organismal development. However, misregulation of their activity is a hallmark of several cancers, including colorectal cancer (CRC), one of the deadliest cancers worldwide. We aim to develop novel classes of small molecule modulators of these pathways, as proof-of-principle lead compounds towards first-in-class therapeutics against cancer.

The successful candidate will join a young and dynamic group at the School of Chemistry in Southampton to work on a challenging project at the interface of chemistry and biology. He/she will benefit from the outstanding facilities and vibrant environment provided by the School of Chemistry. The primary objective of the PhD candidate will be to develop a high profile drug discovery project aimed at identifying new anticancer small molecules targeting and modulating the biological activity of key misregulated proteins of these pathways. This will involve the molecular design, chemical synthesis and biophysical/biological evaluation of the synthesised small molecules. This medicinal chemistry project will be supervised by Dr. Matthias Baud at the School of Chemistry, supported by a strong network of collaborators in cell and structural biology.

Solid knowledge and experimental skills in synthetic organic chemistry will be helpful, as this will constitute the central part of this project. However, the multidisciplinary nature of this project will give the opportunity to the student to acquire knowledge and skills in other relevant disciplines both in our group and with our collaborators. Those include biophysical techniques (e.g. DSF, NMR, ITC, FP, SPR, MST), biochemistry (e.g. protein expression/purification), computational approaches (e.g. docking), cell biology (e.g. cytotoxicity assays, Western-blots) and structural techniques (e.g. X-ray crystallography).

The project is funded for 3years and welcomes applicants from the UK and EUwho have or expect to obtain at least an upper second classdegree in organic chemistry or allied subjects/relevant disciplines. Funding will cover fees and a stipend at current research council rates of £ 14,296 per annum.

Due to funding restrictions this position is only open to UK/EU applicants

Applications for an MPhil/PhD in Chemistryshould be submitted online at Applications for a PhD in Chemistry should be submitted online at :;=7189&term;=201718

Please place Matthias Baud in the field for proposed supervisor/project

General enquiries should be made to  Any queries on the application process should be made to

Applications will be considered in the order that they are received, and the position will be considered filled when a suitable candidate has been identified