Isolation & Purification of bioactive peptides from protease treated bovine milk protein (whey protein and β-casein) to develop biotechnologies and process technologies for scaled up production of peptide-containing products with health benefits (PhD Scholarship)

Isolation & Purification of bioactive peptides from protease treated bovine milk protein (whey protein and β-casein) to develop biotechnologies and process technologies for scaled up production of peptide-containing products with health benefits.

Annual Stipend: £14,198
Application Deadline: 28th February 2018

Project Team:

Dr Ian Ashton (Academic Lead Supervisor)
Dr Ara Kanekanian (Academic Supervisor)
Dr Anita Setarehnejad (Academic Supervisor)
Dr Phil Evans (Lead Company Supervisor)
Dr Lee Hartley (Company Supervisor)

Project Outline:

There is a significant body of published evidence indicating that milk proteins, particularly their hydrolysates, have a potential to form the basis for the development of novel functional food ingredients. To date, very few dairy companies have fully capitalised on this potential. Some of the generic benefits of casein and whey protein hydrolysate include their ease of digestion and their content of bioactive peptides, many of which can confer health benefits above and beyond the normal nutritional impact.

The aim of the research project is to develop technologies to derive bioactive peptides from bovine milk proteins (whey and casein). The peptides will be analysed and subjected to fractionation and the fractions of interest will undergo further enrichment processing. The ultimate aim is to apply the developed protocols and process bio/technologies for scaled up production of the resulting peptide-containing products. The peptide enrichment selected is anticipated to form the basis of products with particular health benefits.

The project will provide the successful candidate with an exciting opportunity to work across academia and industry. The project supervisory team will be comprised of academic members of staff from Cardiff Metropolitan University department of Healthcare and Food, part of the School of Sport & Health Sciences, and industrial supervisors from Volac International Ltd. The student will carry out research and development at Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Llandaff campus and at Volac International, Port Talbot, where they will use and develop skills in a number of biotechnological, process technology and protein analysis techniques as well as developing communications and project management skills.

Application Deadline:   28th February 2018 

Proposed work as detailed below:

WP1: Complete literature review of current state of the art;

WP2: Complete project planning and critical path;

WP3: Initiate lab scale studies to optimise reaction condition and fractionation;

WP4: Select fraction(s) of interest and develop enriched products;

WP5: Carry out pilot scale feasibility studies.

The research project would suit someone with a BSc (hons) (minimum 2:1) or MSc in Food Science & Technology, Biotechnology, Biochemistry or related discipline.

The scholarship offers all eligible participants (student):

  • KESS PhD Scholarship holders do not pay fees;
  • A monthly stipend in line with RCUK rates: 3 years of funding @ £14,340 per year for PhD
  • An additional budget to support your research of £3,000 for travel, conference attendance, minor equipment, consumables and training
  • An opportunity to access a suite of higher level skills training & attendance at a residential KESS Grad School
  • A minimum of 30 days a year working with the company partner on their allocated project
  • Students must complete & submit their thesis within 3.5 years for PhD
  • All participants must complete the KESS Postgraduate Skills Development Award

To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants should have UK or EU Citizenship, and be resident in the convergence area of Wales on appointment (or be studying in or working in the convergence area immediately prior to starting the project), and should have the right to work in the region on qualification. Residence confirmed by providing documents such as driver’s licence, tenancy agreement or recent statement from bank or building society.

The map for the eligible can be​ found here​.  NB: The map also illustrates other assisted areas in the UK, however only the West Wales and the Valleys (in blue/grey:  noted as ‘a’ areas) is eligible in this project.

To obtain an application form (Participant Application Form) and for further information regarding KESS2 at Cardiff Metropolitan, Please click here

To apply, please submit completed application form to Dr Ian Ashton to Email: iashton@cardiffmet.ac.uk.

For Informal enquiries please contact Dr Ian Ashton tel. 029 20416448; Email: iashton@cardiffmet.ac.uk.

Interviews for this post will take place within the first two weeks of March, with a proposed commencement date to be agreed.

Funding Notes:

Supported by Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships 2 (KESS2) which is an All Wales higher level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. It is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) convergence programme for West Wales and the Valleys.