Research Assistant / Associate in Dual-action Antiviral Dyes to Support the Fight against Covid-19
University of Cambridge Department of Chemical Engineering and Hiotechnology
United Kingdom

The BioNano Engineering group at the Department of Chemical Engineering and Hiotechnology, headed by Dr. Ljiljana Fruk (, is looking for an outstanding postdoctoral research associate for a project involving the development of antiviral pigments. The project is funded by Innovate UK to support the fight against COVID-19 and it is done in collaboration with Colorifix company.

The aim of this project is to develop antiviral dyes to be used to prepare range of materials with antiviral properties. Whereas Colorifix is developing the strategies for sustainable dying process, Fruk lab will be working on identification and modification of the most suitable dyes as well as the assessment of the antiviral properties with the collaborators within Cambridge.

In particular, this position focuses on exploration on existing pigments, modification of the structure and the extensive exploration of reactive oxygen species production to estimate the efficiency of the antiviral action. In addition, the researcher will study the binding to the viral proteins, and optimise the formulation of the pigments both in terms of producing different combinations and changing the molecular structure of the compounds. The antiviral activity will then be assessed by virologists closely working with the group.

The candidate must have a strong background in the area of organic synthesis in particular click chemistry, reactive oxygen species production, and the knowledge of all required characterisation techniques, and should hold a PhD in chemistry, materials science or in a relevant physical science discipline. Experience with antiviral compound design in not required. The candidate must be highly motivated and should have a strong academic record in terms of publications. The ability to work both as part of a team, and independently, coupled with excellent communication, organisational and problem solving skills are also required. The duties / responsibilities of this post include developing and driving research objectives; close collaboration with the company and University collaborators, writing up the reports and preparing presentations, publications and grant applications; assisting in the supervision of related PhD research project and supervision of a technical staff working on the project, and delivering seminars. It is expected that the candidate will contribute substantially to the future direction of the project.

More information about the Department is available here:

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 12 months in the first instance.

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

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

Informal enquiries about the job can be made to Dr Ljiljana Fruk via

Please quote reference NQ24229 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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