Imperial College London


Faculty of Natural SciencesDepartment of Chemistry

Research Associate (EPSRC Fellow)



+44 (0)20 7594 1555yuval.elani10 Website




541ChemistrySouth Kensington Campus





Dr Yuval Elani in an EPSRC Research Fellow working in the Department of Chemistry. His research centres on the development of microfluidic technologies for synthetic biology, specifically for the bottom up construction of artificial cells that resemble biological cells in form and function.

He is currently investigating how these artificial cells can be interfaced with living biological systems – organelles, cells, and tissues – to yield hybrid cellular bionic systems that are composed of living and synthetic components. In particular, Yuval’s research focusses on:

  • How artificial cells can be used as cell mimics to probe basic biological phenomena (in particular membrane-based processes) in a simplified environment
  • How artificial cells can engineered to perform bespoke and biotechnologically useful functions as synthetic soft-matter micromachines in a suite of industrial and clinical applications.

Yuval has published extensively in the areas of synthetic biology, biointerfaces, and soft-matter biotechnology, and his work has been recognised by the UK Parliamentary and Scientific committee who awarded him the Roscoe Medal and Gold Award in 2015, and by the World Economic Forum, who selected him to be part of their Young Scientist Community. He is also the recipient of the Lord Porter Prize for academic excellence, and holds a prestigious EPSRC Fellowship to conduct blue skies research.

Yuval’s academic training was at Cambridge University where he read Natural Sciences as an undergraduate, and at Imperial College London, where he completed a multidisciplinary MRes studying drug/membrane interactions and a PhD on developing microfluidic technologies for the generation of compartmentalised cell-mimetic microreactors. This was followed by a Doctoral Prize Fellowship, completed in 2016.

Yuval is affiliated with the CAPITALS programme, the Membrane Biophysics Platform, and the Institute of Chemical Biology, and is keen to explore collaborations across the physical and biological sciences, as well as with industry.  

Funding Opportunities 

If you are a talented and dedicated scientist that is interested in joining the group as an MSci, MRes, UROP, or PhD student, please get in touch.

Prospective PhD students should be aware of the President's PhD Scholarship Scheme, and MRes students of research programmes in Chemical Biology, Plant Chemical Biology, and Nanomaterials.

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Elani Y, Law RV, Ces O, 2014, Vesicle-based artificial cells as chemical microreactors with spatially segregated reaction pathways, Nature Communications, Vol:5, ISSN:2041-1723


Carreras P, Elani Y, Law RV, et al., 2014, A droplet trapping microfluidic device for the study of mass-transport across droplet interface bilayers, Pages:1620-1622

More Publications