Development of diagnostic tests for infectious disease with industrial placement in the UK

We have an exciting opportunity to work with LSTM and our industrial partner, Mologic on developing and evaluation diagnostics for Neglected Tropical Diseases such as Dengue, and Emerging Infectious Diseases such as Ebola and Lassa fever.

We work on Rapid Diagnostics Tests (RDTs) on lateral-flow formats that can be used close to patients, for Dengue fever, Yellow Fever, Japanese Encephalitis, Zika Leishmania and Schistosomiasis. The commercial market for these tests is small, but the need is enormous. We have industrial partners who believe in delivery of diagnostics at cost and we work with FIND, MSF, BMGF to deliver this outcome. You will join a passionate team of diagnostics experts and will be involved in the development of Target Product Profiles, prioritisation of diseases, development of antigen/antibody complexes, placement in Mologic to analyse reaction dynamics, transfer and optimise lateral flow tests. There is the potential to evaluate developed diagnostics in the field with our partners.

Where does the project lie on the Translational Pathway?

T1 – Basic Research & T2 – Human/Clinical Research

Expected Outputs

The main output of this PhD programme will be a prototype diagnostics test for NTDs that can be evaluated in the field and will advance to WHO-prequalification.

We expect to publish at least two high quality papers, and are currently applying for Wellcome trust funding to support future efforts. We encourage the PhD student to apply for small grants during the PhD, and by the end of the programme to apply for fellowships with our support.


Training Opportunities

Training from SME in commercialisation of RDTs & molecular tests, learn from business leaders . At LSTM benefit from group of diagnostic experts and training in the research agenda and connection to the Global Health world of diagnostics.


Skills Required

Good laboratory skills would be beneficial, work in viruses and molecular experience. A passion for global health and professionalism to work in both LSTM and Mologic essential!


Key Publications associated with this project

Medley G., Hollingsworth DE, Adams ER. 2015.  Modelling of diagnostics to support Visceral Leishmaniasis elimination in the Indian sub-continent. Nature. 528(7580):S102-

Edwards T, Signor LD, Williams C, Donis E, Cuevas LE, Adams ER. (2016) Co-infections with Chikungunya and Dengue Viruses, Guatemala. Emerg Infect Dis. (11):2003-2005.

Adams ER 2015 Molecular diagnostics - current research and applications. Clin Infect Dis. Jun 15;60(12):1877. doi: 10.1093/cid/civ218.  

LSTM Themes and Topics – Key Words

Neglected Tropical Diseases

Diagnostics – part of the Centre for Drugs and Diagnostics

Emerging Infectious Disease

The call for applications for the 2020-21 round of studentships is now OPEN. Deadline for receipt of complete application 23:59 13th February 2020

Further information on the programme and application process can be found here