Dr. Pooja Basnett is a lecturer in Biological Sciences. She received a Cavendish scholarship from the University of Westminster to complete a PhD in Applied Biotechnology titled ‘’Biosynthesis of Polyhydroxyalkanoates and their application in medical device development’.
Following her PhD, she worked as a lead postdoc in the European Union-funded project - ReBioStent aimed at developing drug-eluting biodegradable stents. She also worked as a postdoc on other EU projects – NEURIMP which focused on the development of nerve conduits for peripheral nerve repair; POLYBIOSKIN – aimed at developing biocompatible and biodegradable skin contact products. She was also involved in an EPSRC funded project titled CYCLOPS which focused on the development of a wound healing patch with Artificial Intelligence (AI). She has gained expertise in a variety of disciplines including- Fermentation Technology, Downstream Processing, Polymer processing, Biomaterial characterization, Biocompatibility studies, Antibacterial testing, Drug Delivery, and Tissue Engineering.
She leads the level 6 core module – Designing a Sustainable World and contributes to other undergraduate modules (Cell Biology, Application of medical Sciences, Application of Biological Sciences, Contemporary Global Issues, Chemistry, Bioscience in Action) at level 3, 4, 5 and 6. She supervises BSc and MSc research projects and a PhD project.
Her research focuses on the production of value-added products such as bioplastics using waste feedstock and their application in the field of medicine. She has worked on the production of novel biopolymers such as polyhydroxyalkanoates and bacterial cellulose via bacterial fermentation process using a range of waste streams. Polymer characterization, processing, biocompatibility with the mammalian cells and its degradation behavior forms the core aspect of her research. Her research findings have been published in several peer-reviewed journals. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and an Associate Fellow of Higher Education Academy.