Clinical testing of a novel technology for accurate screening of diabetic foot ulcers and periodontal disease - PhD studentship

An industry-co-funded PhD studentship opportunity, located in the Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences at UWE Bristol, is available with a living stipend and tuition fees at Home/ EU rates.

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 26 February 2019.

About the studentship

An industry-co-funded PhD studentship opportunity, located in the Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences at UWE Bristol, is available with a living stipend and tuition fees at Home/ EU rates.

This exciting PhD opportunity is in partnership with the French companies CEMAG Consulting and Aryballe Technologies, in an emerging area of diagnosing disease and disease progression non-invasively using volatile markers.

The project will be focused on the analysis of volatile markers from the mouth and foot of patients with Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in the UK with high incidence of periodontal disease and also the most common cause of non-traumatic limb amputation. Currently there is no self-testing device available that could help patients to self-monitor the care of their foot or gum.

The project is focused on:

  1.  Monitoring bacteria on the skin and gum.
  2. Analysing their volatile organic (VOC) profile by  Selected Ion Flow Tube Mass Spectrometry (SIFT-MS) and by the use of a portable electronic device, the ‘digital nose’ NeOse(TM).
  3. Assessing the sensitivity or resistance to antibiotics through VOC produced by bacterial metabolism.
  4. The bacterial profile will also be analysed by Human Oral Microbe Identification Microarray (HOMIM) and bioinformatics. This project will involve in vitro studies using our in-house perfusion biofilm system and conducting clinical trials with diabetic patients.

This research will help detecting the microbial infection on the foot before onset of ulceration through the use of NeOse (TM).  The project has promise for utilising a new point-of-care device to aid personalised care plan for diabetics.

Funding details

The studentship will start on either Monday 1 April or Tuesday 1 October 2019, and consists of an annual tax-free stipend of £14,777, subject to satisfactory progress, for three years. In addition, full-time tuition fees will be covered for the length of the funding period.

The studentship will only fully fund applicants who are eligible for Home/EU fees. Applicants who are normally required to cover international fees will have to cover the difference between the home/EU and the overseas tuition fee rates.

Eligibility criteria

  • A minimum of a good honours degree (minimum of upper second class honours degree) in a relevant scientific discipline (e.g. Biological or Biomedical Sciences).
  • We are looking for self-motivated researcher with strong organisational, communication, technical and analytical skills to address the overall aims of the project in an innovative manner.
  • A recognised English language qualification is required. 

How to apply

Download and complete the Graduate School studentship application form and send it directly to the UWE Bristol Graduate School. Please ensure you include the title of the research project you propose to undertake, and detail why you are interested in undertaking this PhD project and what relevant knowledge, experience and qualifications you would bring to the research. Please see the Graduate School studentship application guidance notes for further information about how to complete the application form.

Please also complete the Equal Opportunities monitoring form and complete the first section of the Graduate School application reference sheet before sending to your nominated referees.

For an informal discussion about the studentship, please email Dr Saliha Saad at Saliha.Saad@uwe.ac.uk.

Closing date

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 26 February 2019.

Further information

If you have not heard from us by Monday 18 March 2019, we thank you for your application, but do not wish to pursue it on this occasion.

The start date of this PhD studentship is either Monday 1 April or Tuesday 1 October 2019.

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