Development of Science-based Design Space for solid dosage forms with a combinational probiotic and prebiotic formulations

Vitamin deficiency and insufficiency is an increasing issue for health and immunity, even for countries like the UK, further highlighted by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.  To address this issue, the development of combinational probiotic and prebiotic products worth exploring, for which the understanding of the science related to the processing, compression and stability of probiotics in the presence of prebiotics in such a dosage form is essential. The primary objectives would be to understand thermo-mechanical behaviour of these combinational systems and to develop a robust design space for design and manufacture such dosage forms, while also ensuring the viability of the probiotics. Specific tasks for this project include but not limited to critical literature review to understand the background, the state-of-the-art and the challenges,  to identify the knowledge gap, and to develop and implement a research plan to address the identified knowledge gaps.

Start date

1 October 2021


48 months

Application deadline

Funding source

iCase and P&G

Funding information

Tuition fees will be covered, plus a stipend of £15,285 per year.


The project aims to develop a science-based design space for the co-delivery of combinations of pro- and prebiotics in consumer-desired dosage forms that meet regulatory requirements. To achieve this goal, the following specific objectives are identified for this work package:

  1. Develop a full understanding of the raw materials and the compression properties of current product chassis
  2. Identify the knowledge gap through critical literature analysis, and design the research plan
  3. Develop a robust experimental/numerical protocol for producing and analysing the combinational dosage forms,  and evaluate it with preliminary prototypes.
  4. Define the science and technology of the requirements for the generation of desirable attributes of the product as a function of ingredient properties

Construct a design space for the design and manufacture of combinational probiotic and prebiotic formulations.

Related links

Department of Chemical and Process Engineering (Formulations and products)

Eligibility criteria

We are looking for a highly motivated candidate with a first class or upper second-class BSc or Master’s level degree (or international equivalent) in Engineering or a closely related subject area. The candidate should be a good team player and can engage in interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral collaboration with good oral and written communication skills. Previous experience or some knowledge in powder technology and formulation science are desirable bit not essential as training will be provided.

This studentship is available for UK students.

IELTS requirements: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in each band or equivalent

How to apply

Applications should be submitted via the Chemical and Process Engineering Research PhD programme page.

Application deadline

Contact details

Charley Wu
15 BC 02
Telephone: +44 (0)1483 683506

Formulation and Product

Our aim is to develop science-based predictive models, design tools and innovative manufacturing processes for formulated products based upon thorough process and mechanistic understanding. This is underpinned by our active research in particulate materials manufacturing, multiphase flow, advanced numerical modelling using coupled discrete element methods with computational fluid dynamics (DEM-CFD) and finite element modelling (FEM), process modelling and optimisation, and measurements and characterisation using advanced techniques such as x-ray computed microtomography, and positron emission particle tracking (PEPT).


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