Research Assistant Associate in Biosensing and Diagnostics

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Job description

Job summary

Purpose of the Post

Designing, synthesising and characterising nanostructured materials for applications in biosensing of disease biomarkers taking a multidisciplinary approach integrating materials science and bioengineering approaches to yield functional nanomaterials that will enable good biomarker detection for infectious and non-communicable diseases. These nanomaterials will be investigated for their recognition and binding capacities and evaluated for use in assays such as lateral flow or point-of-care or ELISA-based formats. The post also involves the clinical validation of the bioanalytical techniques.

The post-holder will be active within a vibrant and multidisciplinary environment comprising multiple projects. This post will liaise closely with researchers trained in a wide array of faculties, including nanomaterials, engineering, as well as biology (with focus areas in drug delivery, tissue engineering and diagnostics).

Duties and responsibilities

Key Responsibilities


  • Evaluation of antibody affinity.
  • Prepare and characterise nanomaterials using state-of-the-art techniques, such as electron microscopy techniques, scattering techniques, and UV-vis. Optimise nanoparticle functionalization for their detection of biomolecules in clinically relevant ranges.
  • Validate immunoreagents and assay format by ELISA.
  • LFIA design and assembly, including sample pad, and small-scale manufacture.
  • Matrix effect evaluation on optimized assays and sample treatment design optimization. Evaluation of the matrix effect blood, nasal and throat swab. Optimization of the buffer and surfactant for an optimal performance.
  • Spiked clinical sample screening and sample treatment design.
  • Clinical accuracy evaluation of the assay (sensitivity and specificity).
  • Undertake the associated data analysis and interpretation of data.
  • Help the other research staff, technicians, and students in the daily management of the group laboratories and facilities.
  • To liaise with the other research staff and students working in broad areas of relevance to the research project and partner institutions.
  • To write progress reports and prepare results for publication and dissemination via journals, presentations, and the web.
  • To attend progress and management meetings as required and network with the other research groups.
  • To collaborate with industrial partners.
  • To take initiatives in the planning of research.
  • To develop any required skills and knowledge.
  • To identify and develop suitable techniques and apparatus for the collection and analysis of data.
  • To conduct data analysis.
  • To ensure the validity and reliability of data at all times.
  • To maintain accurate and complete records of all findings.
  • To write reports for submission to research sponsors.
  • To prepare material for presentation in oral and poster formats.
  • To present findings to colleagues and at conferences.
  • To draft publications and prepare them for submission to refereed journals.
  • To publish in high quality refereed journals.
  • To provide guidance to staff and students.
  • To take responsibility for organising resources and effective decision making in support of research.
  • To attend relevant workshops and conferences as necessary.
  • To develop contacts and research collaborations within the College and the wider community.
  • To promote the reputation of the Group, the Departments, and the College.
  • To undertake instruction of PhD students, as agreed.
  • To actively participate in Group research meetings and internal seminars.
  • To prepare and deliver a small number of lectures, and mark assessments, as agreed.

Essential requirements

Candidates/post holders will be expected to demonstrate the following:


A first degree (or equivalent) or a Masters (or equivalent) in Chemistry, Physics, Materials Science, or Engineering or similar.

Research Associate: Hold a PhD (or equivalent) in Chemistry, Physics, Materials Science, Bioengineering or similar.

Research Assistant: Near completion of a PhD (or equivalent) in Chemistry, Physics, Materials Science, Bioengineering or similar.

Experience and knowledge

Experience in nanomaterial design and fabrication strategies for biosensing applications.

Experience in antibody affinity evaluation.

Experience in a wide range of synthetic and chemical biology skills (e.g. catalysis, wet chemistry, purification, ELISA)

Experience in the design of lateral flow devices (e.g. microdrop printing techniques, small scale manufacture, assembly).

Experience in clinical biomarker quantification and statistics.

Experience in nanomaterial and chemical-based characterisation techniques, such as NMR, SAXS, UV-vis, microscopy and spectroscopy.

Experience in data or image analysis.

Experience in writing papers including a number of first-authored papers in well-respected journals.

Knowledge of Health and Safety

Skills and Abilities

Excellent written and oral communication skills.

Demonstrable ability for innovation and original research.

Demonstrated ability to work in a collaborative environment.

Demonstrated ability to conduct a detailed review of recent literature.

Demonstrated ability to develop and apply new concepts.

A creative approach to problem-solving.

Further information

*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.

Further guidance may be sought from Mrs Darakshan Khan ( ).

Further information can be obtained from Professor Molly Stevens,

For technical issues when applying online please email

Committed to equality and valuing diversity, we are also an Athena SWAN Silver Award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a Disability Confident Employerand are working in partnership with GIRES to promote respect for trans people.

The College is a proud signatory to the San-Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), which means that in hiring and promotion decisions, we evaluate applicants on the quality of their work, not the journal impact factor where it is published.For more information, see

  • Biosensing and Diagnostics - JD - ENG01373.pdf

About Imperial College London

Imperial College London is the UK's only university focussed entirely on science, engineering, medicine and business and we are consistently rated in the top 10 universities in the world.

You will find our main London campus in South Kensington, with our hospital campuses located nearby in West and North London. We also have Silwood Park in Berkshire and state-of-the-art facilities in development at our major new campus in White City.

We work in a multidisciplinary and diverse community for education, research, translation and commercialisation, harnessing science and innovation to tackle the big global challenges our complex world faces.

It's our mission to achieve enduring excellence in all that we do for the benefit of society - and we are looking for the most talented people to help us get there.

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.

Imperial College is committed to equality of opportunity, to eliminating discrimination and to creating an inclusive working environment. We are an Athena SWAN Silver award winner, a Stonewall Diversity Champion, a Disability Confident Employer and work in partnership with GIRES to promote respect for trans people.

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