Location Deakin University, School of Life and Environmental Sciences

PhD scholarship - Amplification strategies in point-of-care electrochemical biosensors

Point-of-care biosensors are useful when patients or physicians need a rapid measurement of a biochemical species or property. Commercial examples include glucose, blood coagulation time, cardiac markers and pregnancy tests. This is part of a growing revolution in medical testing that seeks to bring the test to the patient so they and their doctor get the information they need when they need it. 
 Some analytes of interest are very dilute and so the signal needs to be amplified. This can be true for DNA and certain medically important antigens, such as heart attack markers. The research program being proposed will explore biochemical amplification strategies for point of care tests of interest to the industrial partner. The work will involve the development of new chemical/biochemical strategies, the design of novel reagents and the design, fabrication and testing of new types of biosensors to use the reagents. 
 The project aims to develop systems for chemically amplifying a signal from biosensing events that allow the reliable detection of chosen analytes at pM concentrations and below, using an electrochemical readout system. This will involve: 
 • Development of chemical strategies to achieve the amplification 
 • Optimisation of the reagents utilised in the process 
 • Integration of the amplification process with a commercial biosensor system 
 • Refinement of system to enable cost-effective production and use in a point-of-care test product. 

Eligibility criteria 

 • Applicants must meet Deakin’s PhD entry requirements, be enrolling full-time and hold an Honours degree (First Class) or a Master’s degree with a substantial research component in a related field. Please refer to the entry pathways to higher degrees by research for further information. 
 • A Bachelor qualification in either Science, Biochemistry, or Biomedical Science with a large content of chemistry-based units. 
 • Experience with biochemistry and protein chemistry. 
 • An interest in applied science and product development. 
 • Australian Citizenship, Australian Permanent Resident, New Zealand Citizenship

Value and duration

• A PhD Scholarship of $26,628 (2017 rate) per annum tax exempt is available.
• A relocation allowance up to $1,500 (2017 rate) awarded to students who are moving from interstate or overseas in order to study at Deakin
• Paid sick, maternity and parental leave


• 3 years

Please Note: Should this listing mention details of an available scholarship, it is your responsibility to confirm the specifics with the university / institute prior to applyiing. Terms and conditions are in some cases subject to change and are not always reflected immediately within listings.

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Further Information / Application Enquiries

Dr Angel Torriero