Synthetic Biology – Pathway Engineering

The combination of genetic engineering with the new tools of synthetic biology have opened the way to the production of microorganisms dedicated to the overproduction of valuable natural products.  This is just the beginning – the ability to engineer proteins and enzymes by either rational methods or by directed evolution – means that the technology can be widened to novel analogues of natural products or to completely non-natural products.

You will therefore develop a research profile in the area of synthetic biology-pathway engineering for efficient large-scale synthesis of bioactive compounds in any area relevant to health or biofuels. A proven record of achievement in international quality publications is essential to contribute to the University’s ambition to excel at REF2020. You will also be expected to attract research income on an individual and collaborative basis with colleagues in the School of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Astbury Centre of Structural Molecular Biology.

In addition, you will provide research supervision and attract research students to the University and undertake a teaching load deemed appropriate by the Head of School, which will be significantly reduced in the first years of the fellowship. Excellent facilities and infrastructure are available providing access to biophysical facilities and techniques (EM, X-ray NMR, MS etc), chemical analyses (NMR, small molecule MS) and medicinal chemistry.

You should have a strong research background in synthetic biology related to pathway engineering.  Useful areas of experience are likely to be in the areas of directed evolution, protein engineering, metabolic pathway control and engineering, chemical biology, pathway flux and/or organic chemistry.  Individuals with experience of attracting external funding are particularly encouraged to apply.

University Grade 8 (£38,511 to £45,954)

For informal enquiries about the role please contact either Professor Adrian Whitehouse, Director of Research, School of Molecular and Cellular Biology, tel: +44 (0)113 343 7096, email: or Professor David Westhead, Head of School, Molecular and Cellular Biology, tel: +44 (0)113 343 3116, email:

Ref: FBSMB1000