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Development of a high resolution microscope using microfluidic technology

PGR-P-355

Key facts

Type of research degree
PhD
Application deadline
Ongoing deadline
Project start date
Thursday 1 October 2020
Country eligibility
International (open to all nationalities, including the UK)
Funding
Competition funded
Source of funding
Other
Supervisors
Dr Izzy Jayasinghe and Dr Jung-uk Shim
Schools
School of Physics and Astronomy
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

The goal of this project is the creation of a novel microfluidic platform that will be applied to develop a high resolution microscope. Microfluidics is the science and technology of systems that control a small amount (nano- to atto- liters) of liquids in channels with dimensions of between 10 and 100m. It is emerging as an essential component of the new generation of nanoscale (super-resolution) microscopy methods which have transformed Cell and Molecular Biology over the last decade. Some of the latest super-resolution techniques include DNA-PAINT and Expansion Microscopy (ExM) which promise spatial resolution of mere nanometres for visualising proteins and molecules within biological samples. One limitation in the current state of the art is its inability to standardise the intrinsic chemistry of the samples and the excessive manual handling of the biological structures. Microfluidic devices promise a unique opportunity to control the precise chemistry and the dimensions of the sample and enable researchers to carry out the super-resolution imaging in non-specialised instruments. In this project, we will develop a new microfluidic device which can perform ExM (a concept that we call MicroExM) on different cell types (supplied by Dr Jayasinghe&rsquo;s group). The MicroExM device will then be trialled on various imaging platforms including commercially available fluorescence microscopes and custom-built super-resolution microscopy systems. Built-into the MicroExM device, will be a DNA-based calibration system which reports the internal chemical environment of the sample and the spatial resolution that is achieved in the optical images. A principal outcome of the project will be a versatile and novel platform which makes ExM a robust and versatile super-resolution microscopy technique that is available to a wider community of Cell and Molecular Biologists than at present.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<p>Dr Jung-uk Shim<br /> <a href="https://physicalsciences.leeds.ac.uk/staff/132/dr-jung-uk-shim">https://physicalsciences.leeds.ac.uk/staff/132/dr-jung-uk-shim</a><br /> <a href="https://www.astbury.leeds.ac.uk/people/staff/staffpage.php?StaffID=JUS">http://www.astbury.leeds.ac.uk/people/staff/staffpage.php?StaffID=JUS</a></p> <p>Dr Izzy Jayasinghe<br /> <a href="https://www.musclesuperres.com">www.musclesuperres.com</a><br /> <a href="https://biologicalsciences.leeds.ac.uk/school-biomedical-sciences/staff/90/dr-izzy-jayasinghe">https://biologicalsciences.leeds.ac.uk/school-biomedical-sciences/staff/90/dr-izzy-jayasinghe</a></p>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.leeds.ac.uk/rsa/prospective_students/apply/I_want_to_apply.html">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is <span style="font-family:&quot;Calibri&quot;,sans-serif; font-size:13pt; line-height:115%; mso-ansi-language:EN-GB; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:Arial; mso-bidi-language:AR-SA; mso-fareast-font-family:&quot;Malgun Gothic&quot;; mso-fareast-language:KO; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin"><font color="#000000">Development of a high resolution microscope using microfluidic technology </font></span>as well as&nbsp;<a href="https://eps.leeds.ac.uk/physics/staff/4132/dr-jung-uk-shim">Dr Jung-uk Shim</a> as your proposed supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>We welcome applications from all suitably-qualified candidates, but UK black and minority ethnic (BME) researchers are currently under-represented in our Postgraduate Research community, and we would therefore particularly encourage applications from UK BME candidates. All scholarships will be awarded on the basis of merit.</em></p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p><strong>Self-Funding Students</strong></p> <p><strong>Funding Eligibility</strong></p> <p><strong>UK/EU</strong> &ndash;&nbsp;Leeds Doctoral Scholarship Award paying Academic Fees and Maintenance matching EPSRC rate of &pound;15,009 per year for 3 years, Alumni Bursary for previous graduates from the University of Leeds offering 10% discount on Academic Fees, School of Physics &amp; Astronomy Scholarship award and Bell Burnell Scholarship award&nbsp;paying Academic Fees and Maintenance matching EPSRC rate of &pound;15,009 per year for 3 years</p> <p><strong>International Students</strong> &ndash;&nbsp;China Scholarship Council-University of Leeds Scholarship Award paying Academic Fees for 3 years, Alumni Bursary for previous graduates from the University of Leeds offering 10% discount on Academic Fees, School of Physics &amp; Astronomy Fee Only Scholarship award paying Academic Fees for 3 years and Bell Burnell Scholarship award&nbsp;paying Academic Fees and Maintenance matching EPSRC rate of &pound;15,009 per year for 3 years</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information please contact Doctoral College Admissions by email:&nbsp; <a href="mailto:map.pgr.admissions@leeds.ac.uk">maps.pgr.admissions@leeds.ac.uk</a> or by telephone:&nbsp; + 44 (0) 113 343 5057</p> <p>OR</p> <p>Dr Jung-uk Shim &ndash;&nbsp;Tel:&nbsp;&nbsp;+ 44 (0) 113 343 3903 or email:&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="mailto:j.shim@leeds.ac.uk">j.shim@leeds.ac.uk</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p>


<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked funding opportunities</h3>
<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked research areas</h3>