Research Fellow (104439-0921) . Job Reference: 1879268

University of Warwick

United Kingdom

September 26, 2021


Vacancy Type/Job category

Research Only


Warwick Medical School, Biomedical Cell Biology


£31,406 - £40,927 per annum


University of Warwick, Coventry

Vacancy Overview

Full-time, Fixed Term Contract until 20 August 2024

Applications are invited for a motivated postdoctoral fellow to work on an interdisciplinary project which is funded by the Monash-Warwick Alliance AMR Training Programme on Emerging Superbug Threats. This project aims to develop novel nanoparticle-based approaches to target intracellular human pathogens like Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The Fellow will be primarily based in the laboratory of Dr Meera Unnikrishnan at the Warwick Medical School.

The project will investigate the activities and mode of action of recently developed antibiotic-loaded polymeric nanomaterials using relevant in vitro and in vivo TB infection models. It will also involve developing new nanoparticle-based approaches. This cross-disciplinary project will be supervised by Dr Meera Unnikrishnan and Professor Sebastien Perrier, (Warwick Chemistry and Medical School).

The Fellow will receive all necessary training, including animal infection models, pharmaceutical sciences, materials science and chemistry. Specific training opportunities will include containment level 3 working, pharmacokinetic studies, polymer and nanomaterial synthesis and chemical assays. The project will involve collaborations with groups at Monash University with expertise in infection models and pharmacodynamics, through extended research visits, as well as collaborations with groups at Warwick working on mycobacteria and other pathogens.

You will have a PhD in microbiology or a related subject with an excellent record of accomplishment in research, and a strong interest in AMR. Prior experience working with CL2 or CL3 pathogens (preferably mycobacteria), cellular infection assays and microscopy is strongly preferred. Preference will be given to candidates motivated to pursue an independent academic career.

Where you have not yet been awarded your PhD, any offer made to you will be an under-appointment to the post of Research Associate at a salary of £30,497 per annum. Once your PhD has been awarded and you have evidenced this, you will be appointed to the substantive post of Research Fellow at a salary within the range shown above.

Informal enquiries can be made to: Dr Meera Unnikrishnan, Email: or Tel: 02476150457

Job Description

Job purpose

To lead the development of novel nanoparticle-based therapeutic strategies against TB

To support the work of the Monash Warwick Alliance AMR Initiative by facilitating collaboration between its members.

Duties and responsibilities


• Establishing in vitro and in vivo mycobacterial infection models for testing and mechanism of action studies.

• Develop new antibiotic-loaded nanomaterials

• Initiate and conduct collaborative projects with groups at Warwick and Monash

• Help establish a sound research base within the Monash Warwick Alliance AMR Initiative to assist the development of research objectives. Communicate and share skills/knowledge with other Monash Warwick Alliance AMR Initiative Research Fellows to ensure mutual support of collaborative projects.

• Prepare research results for dissemination at academic conferences and in appropriate journals and other reputable outlets.

• Translate knowledge of advances in the subject area into research activity.

• May contribute to preparing new research proposals and grant applications to external bodies, to support a developing research agenda.

• Continually update own knowledge and understanding in field or specialism.

• To work within the requirements of the Research Governance policies of the University.

Teaching and Learning Support

• Could be expected to contribute to the teaching and learning programmes in the department

• Could assist in the supervision of student projects and the development of student research skills, where these align with the Fellow's own research.

Administration and Other Duties

• Ensure compliance with health and safety in all aspects of work.

• Work within budget constraints.

• Assist with communication of the group's research through engagement with schools and the local community

The duties and responsibilities outlined are not intended to be an exhaustive list but provide guidance on the main aspects of the job. You will be required to be flexible in your duties.

Person Specification

The Person Specification focuses on the knowledge, skills, experience and qualifications required to undertake the role effectively. This is measured by (a) Application Form, (b) Test/Exercise, (c) Interview, (d) Presentation.

Essential Criteria 1

Good honours degree and possession of a PhD or equivalent in relevant discipline. (a)

Essential Criteria 2

Proven ability in research and evidence of quality research output in relevant field, through PhD research. (a, c)

Essential Criteria 3

Ability to contribute to the preparation of research outputs for publication. (a, c)

Essential Criteria 4

Expertise in microbiology techniques (such as culture growth, media preparation, sterile technique). (a, c)

Essential Criteria 5

Expertise in ONE OR MORE of the following areas: advanced imaging, mammalian tissue culture, cell infection assays (a, c)

Essential Criteria 6

Excellent quantitative skills and experience of data analysis using standard statistical tests. (a, c)

Essential Criteria 7

Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, to facilitate working in an interdisciplinary team and supporting collaborative research. (c)

Essential Criteria 8

Ability to work independently on research projects (c)

Essential Criteria 9

Awareness of equality/diversity considerations in creating a collegiate and supportive working environment. (a, c)

Desirable Criteria 1

Expertise in microbiology techniques using Hazard Group 2 or 3 pathogens (preferably mycobacteria) in a containment laboratory (a, c)

Desirable Criteria 2

Experience of supervising students/trainees in the lab (a, c)

Further Particulars

The Project

This interdisciplinary project is based on a collaborative project led by Dr Unnikrishnan and Prof Sebastian Perrier to develop new nanoparticle-based antibiotic delivery strategies for intracellular pathogens. Although the advertised project will mainly focus on mycobacteria, there is ample scope to expand this work to other antibiotic resistant intracellular pathogens including Staphylococcus aureus.

The Fellow will be part of the Monash Warwick Alliance Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) training programme in Emerging Superbug Threats. The overarching goals of this programme are to train a future-ready AMR workforce and deliver promising approaches for the treatment of infections. The Fellow will have several AMR-related training opportunities during their Fellowship, in addition to technical training received at Warwick and Monash University.

For more information on the research please click here and here

Warwick Medical School

For further information about the department, please visit the departmental website

For further information about the University of Warwick, please read our University Further Particulars.

Where you have not yet been awarded your PhD, any offer made to you will be an under-appointment to the post of Research Associate at a salary of £30,497 per annum. Once your PhD has been awarded and you have evidenced this, you will be appointed to the substantive post of Research Fellow at a salary within the range shown above.

Right to work in the UK

If you do not yet have the right to work in the UK and/ or are seeking sponsorship under Tier 2 of the UK points-based immigration system please click on this link which contains further information about obtaining right to work in the UK and details about eligibility for sponsorship under Tier 2.

Diversity and Inclusion

The University of Warwick provides an inclusive working and learning environment, recognising and respecting every individual's differences. We welcome applications from individuals who identify with any of the protected characteristics defined by the Equality Act 2010.

Recruitment of Ex-Offenders Policy

As an organisation using the (DBS) Disclosure and Barring Service to assess applicants' suitability for positions of trust, the University of Warwick complies with the DBS Code of Practice and undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a Disclosure on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed. More information is available on the University's Vacancy pages and applicants may request a copy of the DBS Code of Practice.

Closing Date

26 Sep 2021

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