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PhD - Regenerative Therapies: life sciences, biomedical sciences, bio-engineering, physics, mechanical engineering or equivalent (m/f)

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Call for application to the doctoral program of the Berlin-Brandenburg School for Regenerative Therapies

The Berlin-Brandenburg School for Regenerative Therapies (BSRT) offers outstanding interdisciplinary training and research opportunities for national and international doctoral researchers of natural, material and engineering sciences who want to pursue a career in the field of Regenerative Medicine and aim at translating their scientific discoveries into clinical applications. The BSRT has currently three projects available for which you can apply.

Project 1: Biological effect of a drug releasing coating around orthopedic implants

Project 2: How open-porous magnesium implants improve bone regeneration after cancer treatment

Project 3: Mechanically driven cellular self-organization and soft tissue patterning in bone healing


The doctoral program of the BSRT offers top class scientific training leading to the award of a doctoral degree for students with a Master’s or equivalent degree in biology, immunology, biochemistry, bioengineering, veterinary medicine, chemistry, engineering, material sciences or physics. The program comprises a series of courses, seminars and research projects designed to equip students with the essentials to become effective scientists in Regenerative Medicine. Interaction between biological, engineering and clinical research will be fostered through mutual supervision of each PhD project by top class researchers from different disciplines from academia and industry. Successful candidates who will study for their doctoral degree at the BSRT will be funded by third party funding.

Application deadline is the 30th April 2016

The BSRT is an equal opportunities Graduate school. We particularly encourage applications from women. We also welcome applications from disabled persons and the BSRT operates a policy whereby preference is given to disabled applicants who have qualifications equivalent to those of able bodied persons applying for the same position.


Project 1

Biological effect of a drug releasing coating around orthopedic implants

At the Julius Wolff Institute in collaboration with the BSRT, a PhD project is available in the group of Controlled Tissue Formation.

Currently, still 5 to 10% of bone fractures heal improper and require more time to repair or even require additional surgery. This of course causes additional suffering for the patients.  Apparently, these patients lack one or more essential factors needed in fracture repair. In our project we want to test the biological effect of a drug releasing nanomaterial. The innovative aspect of our approach is that the drugs are only released at the moment they are needed in the healing process. The PhD candidate will investigate the release of a model drug and therapeutic ions from nano-seized mesoporous bioactive glasses, evaluate their biological effects and the biocompatibility of the carrier material. The PhD candidate will look into possible ways of delivering the mesoporous glasses into a bone defect side and its influence on the drug release kinetics. We aim with this approach to lower the percentage of improper bone healing and thus help the patients get back to their normal lives quicker.

A master degree in the field of life sciences, biomedical sciences, bio-engineering or equivalent is required. A keen interest in biomaterials will be positively evaluated. The PhD candidate will get the opportunity to participate in the BSRT graduate school to broaden their scientific knowledge and further develop their soft skills.

References:
M. Mehta et al. Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews 64 (2012) 1257–1276
A.J. Salinas, M. Vallet-Regí. Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids 432 (2016) 9–14


Project 2

How open-porous magnesium implants improve bone regeneration after cancer treatment

At the Julius Wolff Institute in collaboration with the BSRT, a PhD project is available in the group of Biodegradation with emphasis on Biodegradable Metals.

Surgical bone cancer treatment of primary tumors or metastasis is accompanied by significant loss of stability, since a radical surgical treatment is required to heal the patient. As standard of care, permanent – non-degradable - implant materials are preferred as they provide initial load-bearing and are considered an established bone cancer treatment with known risks of relapse. However, especially young patients would benefit from implants which dissolve completely while they improve bone regeneration and suppress cancer relapse at the same time. A promising material solution could be open-porous biodegradable materials based on magnesium alloys. From previous research it is known that cell lines are much more sensitive to biodegradable magnesium degradation than primary cells. Based on this findings, the aim of the project is to deepen the understanding how this biodegradable material is suppressing cancer cells and promoting healthy bone regeneration at the same time and which environmental factors may play an important role. The engineering aspect of the PhD could be how the load-bearing capacity of the open-porous implant can be adapted to the individual surgical situation. A master degree in the field of life sciences, biomedical sciences, bio-/mechanical-engineering or equivalent is required. A keen interest in biomaterials will be positively evaluated. The PhD candidate will get the opportunity to participate in the BSRT graduate school to broaden their scientific knowledge and further develop their soft skills.

References:
Zheng YF, Gu XN, Witte F. Materials Science and Engineering: R: Reports 77 (2014) 1-34.
Bobe K et al. Acta Biomaterialia 9 (2013) 8611-23.


Project 3

Mechanically driven cellular self-organization and soft tissue patterning in bone healing

Although bone is able to self-repair, in many situations its regeneration potential is impaired leading to delayed functional restoration or even non-unions. One of those situations concerns large bone defects which, if left untreated, results in limited bone tissue formation and unsuccessful healing. A peculiarity of this healing situation is that natural bone tissue patterning results in the formation of a bone capsule enclosing the medullary cavity. We have previously observed that this bone formation pattern follows collagen fiber organization that occurs much earlier during healing. The reason for this soft tissue patterning was found in cellular self-organization based on the traction forces generated by the individual cells. We have also observed that in large compared to small defects, there is a significant reduction in the levels of limb-loading induced mechanical strain under which the regeneration process takes place. Such local strains are also known to influence the structural organization of the tissue. However, it remains unknown to what extend both, traction force induced patterning and local mechanical strains within the healing region, interfere or synergistically contribute to soft tissue patterning with consequences for bone regeneration.

The aim of this project is to investigate how the two above-described mechanical aspects influence cellular and soft tissue organization representing different clinically relevant bone defect sizes. We will also investigate potential ways to manipulate the mechanical environment of the healing region to influence cellular and tissue organization. In the experimental work, an existing in vitro microtissue setup will be used to investigate cellular organization under controlled mechanical conditions which aim to replicate the physical/geometrical constrains in a large bone defect. Furthermore mechano-bioreactors will be used to apply in vivo-like cyclic mechanical loading signals and the influence of load magnitude and frequency on tissue patterning will be investigated. In vitro experiments will be coupled to computer models that determine the local mechanical strains surrounding individual cells and to better understand the dynamics of cellular self-organization and soft tissue formation under load.

We are looking for PhD-candidates that have a master or diploma in physics, mechanical engineering or similar with experience in finite element modelling and programming. Ideally, you already have first experience in cell culture and are confident in building up and working with small-scale mechanical equipment.

References:
Checa S, Rausch MK, Petersen A, Kuhl E, Duda GN. The emergence of extracellular matrix mechanics and cell traction forces as important regulators of cellular self-organization. Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 2015 Jan;14(1):1-13.
 
 

Kontaktdaten


Art des Bewerbungszugangs
Please send us your application only as one PDF file by adding the required documents in the order they are listed below, name the file only with your surname and send this to coordination_office@bsrt.de. The PDF file must be no larger than 10 MB. Please send only a short e-mail in which you list the projects for which you want to apply and add any other information in the application document. Please follow these instructions otherwise your application may be rejected. The application must be in English and should include the following documents:
  • a short letter of application in which your describe your motivation in your own words
    • why you want to join the BSRT
    • in which of the three projects you are interested and why (you can choose all of them if you want)
    • your expectations from the BSRT and your plans for your professional future
  • your CV including the addresses of two referees
  • copies of certificates (Bachelor and Master certificate and transcript or equivalent degrees; high school diploma or equivalent)
  • publication list (if applicable)
  • title and summary of master thesis (no more than one page)
Kontakt für Bewerbungen
Berlin-Brandenburg School for Regenerative Therapies
Charité • Campus Virchow-Klinikum
Augustenburger Platz 1
13353 Berlin
 
Phone: +49 30 450 539418
Fax: +49 30 450 539918
E-Mail: coordination_office@bsrt.de
Web: www.bsrt.de

 

Details der Stellenanzeige


Arbeitszeit
Vollzeit
Vertragslaufzeit
Befristete Anstellung
Stellentyp
Promotionsstelle
Berufserfahrung
Berufserfahrung nicht vorausgesetzt
Region
Deutschland (Berlin)
Arbeitsort
13353 Berlin
Fachgebiet
Biologie & Life Sciences
JETZT BEWERBEN