Sheng Qi


  • 1.09 Chemistry

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Personal profile


Phd Positions

Click here for current PhD opportunities in PHA. But feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.

Sheng obtained her BEng. (Hons) in Industrial Pharmacy in 2001 (China Pharmaceutical University). After completing her PhD in 2004 (Queen’s University of Belfast) in the area of lipid based microparticulate drug delivery systems, Sheng worked as a postdoctoral scientist studying the structure and stability of amorphous polymer-drug dispersions. In 2007 Sheng joined the School of Pharmacy at UEA as a lecturer and was promoted to senior lecturer in 2013.  Sheng has worked closely with leading pharmaceutical and excipient companies in the areas of pharmaceutical processing, physicochemical characterisation, and formulation development.

Sheng’s current research interests mainly focus on gaining a fundamental understanding of the behaviour of drug-polymer/lipid dispersions in solid (phase behaviour) and liquid (in biological fluids) states, and developing new approaches for stabilising supersaturated drug dispersions. By working with industrial partners as well as cross-discipline collaborators, her group is aiming to contribute to the interdisciplinary research area of enhancing drug absorption via tailoring the physical chemistry of drug formulations.

Current research interests include

  • Hot melt extrusion/injection moulding for drug delivery
  • Electrospinning and electrospray-formulation design and processing control
  • Drug-polymer/lipid solubility and miscibility
  • Phase separation behaviour of polymer-drug dispersions
  • Polymer facilitated drug solubilisation in biological fluids
  • Lipid-based liquid crystalline platform for drug delivery
  • Effect of manufacturing processes on stability of amorphous pharmaceuticals

Selected Publications

Microstructure of an Immiscible Polymer Blend and Its Stabilization Effect on Amorphous Solid Dispersions
Ziyi Yang, Kathrin Nollenberger, Jessica Albers, Duncan Craig, and Sheng Qi
Molecular Pharmaceutics, Articles ASAP
Publication Date (Web): May 13, 2013 (Article)
DOI: 10.1021/mp400209w

Phase separation in pharmaceutical solid dispersion thin films under high humidity: improved spatial understanding using probe based thermal and spectroscopic nano-characterisation methods.
Sheng Qi, Jonathan G. Moffat, Ziyi Yang.
Molecular Pharmaceutics, 2013.
DOI: 10.1021/mp300557q

Stabilisation of amorphous drugs under high humidity using pharmaceutical thin films.
Yuen Chuen Ng, Ziyi Yang, William James McAuley, Sheng Qi.
European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, 2013.
DOI: 10.1016/j.ejpb.2013.01.008

Insights into the role of polymer-surfactant complexes in drug solubilisation/stabilisation during drug release from solid dispersions.
Sheng Qi, Steve Roser, Karen J. Edler, Claudia Pigliacelli, Ilse Weuts, Marcus Brewster.
Pharmaceutical Research, 2013, 30(1) 290-302
DOI: 10.1007/s11095-012-0873-7

The Development of Modulated, Quasi-Isothermal and Ultraslow Thermal Methods as a Means of Characterizing the ? to ? Indomethacin Polymorphic Transformation.
Sheng Qi, Duncan Q. M. Craig.
Molecular Pharmaceutics, 2012, 9 (5): 1087–1099
DOI: 10.1021/mp2003412

Compositional analysis of low quantities of phase separation in hot melt extruded solid dispersions: a combined atomic force microscopy, photothermal Fourier-transform infrared microspectroscopy and localised thermal analysis approach.
Sheng Qi, Peter Belton, Kathrin Nollenberger, Andreas Gryczke, Duncan Q.M. Craig
Pharmaceutical Research, 2011, 1-16
DOI: 10.1007/s11095-011-0461-2

External Activities


  • Pharmaceutical Research
  • Molecular Pharmaceutics
  • Advances in Polymer Sciences
  • Journal of Colloid and Interfacial Science
  • Crystal Growth & Design (ACS)


Invited talks

  • April 2010: Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences (ACS)-Amorphous III Conference, Nottingham, UK
  • June 2010: the 12th International Workshop on Physical Characterisation of Pharmaceutical Solids, Lille, France
  • August 2010: China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing, China
  • September 2010: TA Instruments workshop on Pharmaceutical Application of Thermal Analysis, London, UK
  • October 2011: American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) on Advanced Characterisation of Hot Melt Extruded Formulations, Washington, USA
  • November 2011: Evonik workshop on Pharmaceutical Hot Melt Extrusion, Frankford, Germany
  • November 2011: RSC Thermal method group meeting ‘The Use of Thermal Methods in Formulation – How Heat Can Help’, Syngenta Jealotts Hill Research Centre, Bracknell, UK
  • July 2012: Tianjin Institute of Pharmaceutical Research, Tianjin, China
  • June 2012: Academy of Pharmaceutical Sciences (ACS)-Amorphous IV Conference: Hot melt extrusion and powder technology, Greenwich, UK
  • May 2013: Aston University, Birmingham, UK
  • June 2013: IDEA Conference, Lille, France
    September 2013: UK-Pharm Sci, Edinburgh, UK
  • March 2014: RSC Thermal Method Group TAC conference, GSK Ware, Hertfordshire, UK
  • June 2014: 16th International workshop on solid-state characterization of pharmaceutical material (IWPCPS), Prague, Czech Republic

Key Research Interests

Material science:

  • Solubility enhancement of poorly soluble drugs
  • Drug-polymer/lipid solubility and miscibility
  • Phase separation behaviour of polymer-drug dispersions
  • Polymer facilitated drug solubilisation in biological fluids
  • Microstructure and geometry controlled drug delivery system
  • Pharmaceutical applications of novel natural polymers

Pharmaceutical process engineering science:

  • Pharmaceutical hot melt extrusion and injection moulding
  • Electrohydrodynamic processes for micro and nanoscale formulations manufacturing
  • FDM 3D printing of pharmaceutical solid dosage forms
  • Freeze drying of low density matrix system

Research Funding

Norwich Research Park (NRP) Translation Fund (PI)
Development of electrospun therapeutic masks; Jan 2017- Oct 2017

Innovative Multi-component Drug Design (IMODE) ; Oct 2016-Oct 2019
Click here to go to the IMODE research page.

Imode logo 

Royal Society & Newton Foundation (co-PI)
Oral cancer therapy; Mar 2016-Mar 2019

Royal Society (PI)
International Exchange Grant: Engineering nanostructured bio-responsive matrices for oral delivery of chemotherapy
Mar 2015-Mar 2017

UEA proof-of-concept fund (PI)
Drug eluting contact lenses for galucoma treatment 2015-2016

Advanced Material and Pharmaceutical Technology Cluster
Jan 2014-July 2015

IDEA: Improving drugs efficacy and availability
Jun 2009-Jun 2013

Evonik Industries (Germany) (PI)
Drug-polymer miscibility and its relationship with the physicochemical stability of solid dispersions
Oct 2009-Sep 2012

Evonik Industries (Germany) (PI)
Nano-characterisation of hot melt extruded formulations
Jan 2007-Apr 2009

Areas of Expertise

Drug delivery; solid state characterisation of pharmaceutical materials and formulations; pharmaceutical processing.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being


Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or