Studentship | Activation Mechanisms of Ubiquitin E3 ligases

MRC Funded
Project with

E3 ligases are a startling class of enzyme that attach the small protein ubiquitin to substrates and regulate virtually all aspects of the cell. To ensure their activity is kept in check, it is subject to strict regulation and when this goes awry it can lead to diseases such as cancer, neurodegeneration and autoimmunity. The regulatory mechanisms for the ~700 E3s are only understood for a handful of members yet exciting and unexpected mechanisms remain to be discovered. This project will gain a molecular level understanding of how E3s associated with disease become activated and how mutations affect their ability to do so. This will provide insights into the causes of diseases and how they might be treated. This is multidisciplinary project that will make use of powerful chemical probes developed by the lab and combine with techniques ranging from cell biology to structural biology, depending on experience.


Life Sci Alliance. 2022, 5:e202101248.

BioRxiv 2020.05.11.087965; doi:

Nature Chemical Biology 2016, 12 (5), 324.

Application Procedure

We are currently accepting applications for our 2023 programme. To apply, please send the following to

  • Cover letter explaining your interest in our work. Please also indicate which group(s) you are most interested in, and whether you prefer rotations or would like to join one lab directly.
  • CV with contact details of three referees.

Applications from overseas students are welcome. The closing date for the first round of applications is April 13th 2023