PhD project development of a novel and commercially applicable drug screening platform
The main objective of this PhD project is the development of a novel and commercially applicable drug screening platform comprising innovative models for in vitro and in vivo efficacy testing and selection of therapeutic compounds, based on Patient Derived Xenografts (PDX) and Patient Derived Organoids (PDO), collectively annotated PDXO. Murine cancer models have been developed since mid-1950’s and comprise syngeneic murine models, GEMMs, human xenografts, Patient-derived xenografts (PDX) models and more recently, humanized mice models. Next to in vivo animal models, current human cancer in vitro models include cancer cell lines (2D) which are derived from primary patient material. This process is very inefficient and involves adaptation and selection to in vitro conditions changing the genetic background of the line compared to the original source. Although these models have proven their use in cancer research, they also demonstrate to be inefficient and inexact. This is reflected by the high costs and the high attrition rate of drug development in the cancer field. For this project, we are looking for a PhD-student. The multidisciplinary approach will be using state-of-the-art molecular biology tools, immunology tools, bioinformatics, organoid cellular models and in vivo models. This should lead to the development of an organ on a chip for oncologic purposes, which could be used for testing therapeutic compounds.
A recent MSc in a related area (Medicine, (Medical) Biology), preferably with a background in oncology, cell biology, pathology, drive for a career in science, team player and positive social skills.
CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT
We offer a fulltime position for a period of 4 years, starting with a two-year contract. The salary is in accordance with the applicable employment conditions including salary scales (wedde schalen) of the concerning university.
Starting date is January 1st, 2019.
Founded in 2012, InnoSer is an innovative and dynamic contract research organization (CRO) that supports discovery and preclinical drug development. For the oncology field InnoSer is developing an unique screening model that incorporates a PDXO platform that encompasses a vast collection of PDX and PDO (organoids). Through this, InnoSer wants to enhance the reliability of preclinical cancer biology and provide quality services to pharmaceutical and biotechnology clients worldwide.
InnoSer Belgium is located at BioVille (Diepenbeek). Bioville is a bio-incubator that focuses on organizations active in the Health & Care area and is an excellent facility for outstanding research. This project will be in collaboration with TRACE, a multidisciplinary project focused on the development of Patient-Derived Xenograft (PDX) models. TRACE is set up within the department of Oncology at the KU Leuven and it is part of the Leuvens Kanker Institute. Place of employment is KU Leuven.
Please send your application form including a personal resume as soon as possible to one of the persons mentioned above but before December 14, 2018.