Postgraduate research opportunities

Multiscale characterization of particle dissolution

Advanced manufacturing (Daniel Markl), Drug Delivery (Health and Wellbeing – Z Rattray)

Number of places



27 February 2020


36 Months


We encourage highly-competitive and motivated students with an interest in the pharmaceutical industry and a background in chemical engineering or pharmaceutical sciences to apply for this project.

Project Details

Subcutaneous delivery of controlled release suspension formulations is presenting an attractive strategy for the delivery of non-orally bioavailable compounds.

As the implementation of these delivery systems in the management of chronic conditions becomes more commonplace, there is a need to better profile their safety and efficacy. Traditional methods of microsphere evaluation rely on dissolution testing in buffer systems. While these approaches are sufficient to ensure batch-to-batch consistency in the manufacture of microspheres, they do not provide sufficient insight into the biological fate of these formulations and their in vivo performance.

In this project you will consider the impact of process and formulation variables (particle size and surface attributes) on microsphere dissolution profiles. A range of particle metrology, material characterization and in situ imaging approaches will be used to experimentally probe the dissolution of poly(lactide-co-glycolide) microspheres under physiologically-relevant conditions. Experimental readout will be used to develop models of microsphere dissolution and drug release. You will have access to world-leading facilities within the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences and the Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallization Future Manufacturing Hub. The supervisory team are experts in formulation and product design, and Process Analytical Technology with pharmaceutical industry experience and links

Funding Details

  • The University student fees and stipend need to be covered from the student’s own Scholarship
  • A bench fee of £10K per annum (to be agreed with the funding body) to cover research costs and student conference travels needs to paid as well.