We seek a highly motivated and enthusiastic PhD student or PhD student candidate at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical University of Lublin (UMLUB). The full-time position as a PhD- student is available for a period of three (3) years. The position is part of the project ”A tissue engineering platform for precision cancer medicine and chemosensitivity testing in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma”, financed by the NCN (National Science Centre). Principal Investigator (PI) is Prof. Dr Matthias Nees.
RESEARCH PROJECT OBJECTIVES
This project aims to establish, characterize, and standardize an organotypic 3D cell-culture or tissue-engineering platform for chemosensitivity-testing of primary tumour cells, isolated from head & neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCC). Matching methods and protocols will be developed as tools to predict the response and efficacy of anti-cancer drugs against aggressive patients’ tumours, and to facilitate better informed clinical decision-making in the future. The project includes collaboration with clinicians at the Dept of Otolaryngology, Centre of Oncology of the Lublin Region St. Jana z Dukli; and the Dept of Otolaryngology, UMLUB, and international collaborations with the Universities of Tampere and Turku/Finland. This project requires frequent short- to intermediate term research visits to our collaborator laboratories.
Carrying out the practical laboratory work described in the project:
- Isolating of tumour cells from primary head and neck cancers, and in vitro culture using 3D cell- and tissue culture models. The international collaborations aim to promote the use of standard techniques applied in tissue engineering and organ-on-a-chip (OoC) devices.
- Realtime and live cell microscopy (bright field, phase contrast and confocal imaging), combined with automated image analyses for phenotypic, high content screening. Additional methods include quantitative RT-PCR, immune fluorescence, genetic engineering (siRNA, CRISPR-cas9), protein biochemistry, etc.
- Attending courses and research visits will train the candidate in generation and analysis of robust scientific data, combined with machine learning, statistics, systems biology and bioinformatics.
- The candidate will communicate research data in the form of manuscripts, posters and oral presentations, e.g. in our internal biweekly meetings, the department’s monthly meetings, national and international scientific conferences.
- The PhD student will work in close collaboration with one Postdoctoral fellow, a second PhD student, the PI, and colleagues from associated research teams. This position requires excellent skills with cell- and tissue culture and molecular biology techniques, combined with an open personality and good social skills. We provide a stimulating, international and interdisciplinary research environment.
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