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Department of Physics

The Cavendish Laboratory
Biological and Soft Systems

BSS : Group Website 

The 21st Century promises a major expansion at the interface of physics with the biological sciences and nanotechnology. These areas fall outside the conventional boundaries of the scientific disciplines of Chemistry, Physics and Biology, requiring a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach. The Biological and Soft Systems Sector (BSS) is pursuing such multidisciplinary research. Using techniques and inspirations from classical polymer physics, soft matter physics and the physics of condensed matter, we build on this foundation with exciting progress in protein folding, biomaterials, cell biophysics and nanoscience, using theoretical, computational, and experimental techniques.  Much of our research takes place within the Centre for the Physics of Medicine with key strengths in:

  • Properties of soft matter
  • Polymers at surfaces and interfaces
  • Protein aggregation and folding
  • Cellular biophysics
  • Modelling of biological systems
  • Medical imaging and biophotonics
  • Nanoscience
  • Environmental Scanning Electron Microscopy (ESEM)


Links to various aspects of the programme can be found below:

Image and Credit: Nanodiamonds uptake in cancer cells - The image depicts a 3D rendering that showcases the process of endocytosis. This is one of the entries of Cavendish Photography Competition first prize winner Jack Hart.