An excellent opportunity has arisen for an MSc at the University of Dundee.
The Farnaby group, located in the new University of Dundee Centre for Targeted Protein Degradation, is seeking to use an emerging type of drug modality to provide chemical tools that can help address the challenge of dementia prevalence across the world. Rather than using molecules that simply inhibit a potential drug target, they will seek to use bifunctional degrader molecules (also known as Proteolysis Targeting Chimeras, PROTACs) to potently and selectively remove target proteins in cellular models of CNS disease. This provides a greater chance of reproducing genetic phenotypes, but via the use and with the advantages of small molecules. In cancer, work from ourselves and others has shown a great impact of this approach, both in basic research and in the discovery of ground-breaking new drugs.
In this project, computational tools will be used to design tool molecules and use organic synthesis/medicinal chemistry to select and make novel targeted protein degraders. Cell biology will then be used to test the molecules to investigate their ability to degrade a target protein that is highly implicated in central nervous system disease.
Due to the multi-disciplinary approach the student will learn a broad set of lab skills across the chemical biology toolbox. The bias between medicinal chemistry and cellular biology can be shaped by the students’ interests.
Please note before submitting your application that you must list your top three project choices in the Research Proposal section of the application form.