Research Associate in Synthetic Protein Materials

Department of Infectious Disease

departnent athena award

Imperial College London, Exhibition Road, London, UK


  • Posted on: 15th Feb 2021
  • Salary: £40,858 - £48,340
  • REF: MED02267
  • Closes: 02nd March 2021
  • Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
  • Hours: Full Time

Job description

Job summary

This role is part of an EPSRC-funded Advanced Manufacturing program to develop a new generation of green, high performance fibres, for use in a wide range of applications from textiles to medical devices. Recent advances in computational protein design allow specific architectures to be designed deliberately to spin useful fibres.

This project uses newly designed synthetic proteins, created from first principles, in order to resolve the crucial obstacles at each step of the supply chain from fermentation, through fibre spinning, to fabric conversion. The project will demonstrate the scalability of each step and produce physical samples for evaluation by partners. The project is an exciting opportunity to accelerate the development of new materials using methods drawn from synthetic biology – and to accelerate the development of a new manufacturing technology.

Duties and responsibilities

As part of a team, we are seeking to appoint a postdoctoral research associate in ‘Synthetic Protein Materials’ to develop a new generation of high-performance fibres and textiles. You will be responsible for fundamental research, designing new synthetic proteins and expressing / purifying these proteins in recombinant hosts. You will liaise with the fibre spinning and materials characterisation team to refine the sequence design and with project partners to transfer the optimised fibres into larger scale production.

Essential requirements

We are looking for a highly creative scientist / engineer, with a good understanding of protein structure.

You must hold a PhD, or equivalent work experience, in structural biology or synthetic biology. Knowledge at postgraduate level of protein structure and experience in expression / purification of recombinant proteins is essential. Experience in computational protein design is desirable. However, we are open to a broad range of relevant research backgrounds and experiences due to the unique interdisciplinary nature of the project.

Further information

The position is available on a full time, fixed term basis from for 10 months in the first instance.

Candidates who have not yet been officially awarded their PhD will be appointed as Research Assistant within the salary range £35,477- £38,566 per annum

For informal enquiries please contact Dr James MacDonald or Prof. Paul Freemont .

Additional information

Please note that job descriptions cannot be exhaustive and the post-holder may be required to undertake other duties, which are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.

All Imperial employees are expected to follow the 7 principles of Imperial Expectations:

  • Champion a positive approach to change and opportunity
  • Communicate regularly and effectively within, and across, teams
  • Consider the thoughts and expectations of others
  • Deliver positive outcomes
  • Encourage inclusive participation and eliminate discrimination
  • Develop and grow skills and expertise
  • Work in a planned and managed way

In addition to the above, employees are required to observe and comply with all College policies and regulations.

We are committed to equality of opportunity, to eliminating discrimination and to creating an inclusive working environment for all. We therefore encourage candidates to apply irrespective of age, disability, marriage or civil partnership status, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion and belief, gender identity, sex, or sexual orientation. We are an Athena SWAN Silver Award winner, a Disability Confident Leader and a Stonewall Diversity Champion.

For technical issues when applying online please email .

Employer Achievements:

company award