Phd Position In Advancing Gut Architecture And Functionality (1.0 Fte)

Utrecht University
November 30, 2023
Offerd Salary:Negotiation
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Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Negotigation
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PhD position in Advancing Gut Architecture and Functionality (1.0 FTE)

Job description

This PhD position is integral to the TOP-GUT MSCA DN project (details: https: // and https: // This project recruits 11 PhD students and we are looking for you as our new motivated and dedicated PhD student. Your research focusses on the development of a 3D gut chip aimed at overcoming the constraints of current in vitro gut models. The project's central objective is to faithfully replicate the physiological attributes of the intestinal lumen using biofabrication methods, including the incorporation of a patterned collagen scaffold to emulate the architectural characteristics of human intestinal villi within a microfluidic device. This '3D gut chip' is envisioned to deliver a 3D tissue structure exposed to fluidic shear, thereby enhancing cell differentiation and physiological function, with a particular emphasis on ameliorating absorptive permeability and biotransformation processes.

  • develop hydrogel constructs capable of accurately replicating the crypt- villus features of the intestinal lumen;
  • cultivate intestinal organoids on the patterned hydrogels and rigorously assess their functional maturation, considering spatial cell arrangement and mucus production, among other factors;
  • integrate the developed topographical elements into a perfusable microfluidic device with both apical and basal access points;
  • investigate the barrier and biotransformation activities of various molecules, encompassing those of bacterial origin, dietary components, and pharmaceutical compounds, under both static and dynamic (flow) conditions within the '3D gut chip.'
  • To achieve these objectives, advanced techniques in 3D cell culturing and biofabrication will be employed. Furthermore, state-of-the-art methodologies will be applied to functionally characterise intestinal cells, including analytical techniques and spatial imaging. Additionally, microfluidic systems and flow modeling will be harnessed to elucidate the biological handling and transformation of drugs and nutrients in the context of health and disease. It is noteworthy that within the TOP-GUT project, the inclusion of stromal compartments and immune cells will expand the scope of investigation.

    Qualifications Excited about the position? Please check if you bring the following criteria:

    Offer As TOP-GUT is a Marie Skłodowska Curie project, we offer: About the organization

    A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major strategic themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Pathways to Sustainability. Shaping science, sharing tomorrow.

    Additional information

    If you have any questions that you'd like us to answer, please contact Silvia Mihăilă (assistant professor of in vitro models of disease) at [email protected].

    Are you an international applicant? Our International Service Desk can answer your questions about living in the Netherlands as international staff.Disclaimer: Another member of the consortium could be excited about your skills and experiences and may want to ask you to join their subject within this consortium. In your application e-mail, please explicitly state if you permit the UU to share your cv and motivation letter with consortium partners. If you do not, or if you explicitly state you do not want this, we will not share the provided information with others. The UU does not guarantee that you will be approached by partners. The personal data you provide will not be used for any other purpose than this internal sharing and possible further recruitment as described in our privacy statement, and will be deleted permanently 4 weeks after a new candidate has been found for this position. If you have any questions about this processing of your personal data, do not hesitate to ask [email protected].

    As Utrecht University, we want to be a home for everyone. We value staff with diverse backgrounds, perspectives and identities, including cultural, religious or ethnic background, gender, sexual orientation, disability or age. We strive to create a safe and inclusive environment in which everyone can flourish and contribute.

    The application deadline is 30/11/2023

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