Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg
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Rotter0118 - Scientist (f/m) / PhD position
Project no:

Project leader:

Project supervisor:
Rotter, Nicole
Application deadline:
25. May 2018
Start of PhD project:
1. Jul 2018

Project description:

Sinergia Project: A Tissue, Cell and Molecular Approach to Unterstanding and Treating Microtia
The overall goal of this project is the development of a clinically-compliant therapy to replace one of the most difficult procedures in reconstructive surgery, namely auricular reconstruction. A bioprinting and bioengineering technique is proposed to produce EarCartilage and EarSkin grafts. To achieve this goal, four goals are appointed in this project:

• Production of bioprinted EarCartilage with appositional growth potential
• Development of the bioengineered EarSkin graft
• An in vivo pre-clinical model of the EarCartilage/EarSkin graft
• Understanding of the molecular and developmental mechanisms surrounding pinna morphogenesis
Elsaesser, A. F. et al. In vitro cytotoxicity and in vivo effects of a decellularized xenogeneic collagen scaffold in nasal cartilage repair. Tissue engineering. Part A 20, 1668-1678, doi:10.1089/ten.TEA.2013.0365 (2014).

Kesti, M. et al. Bioprinting Complex Cartilaginous Structures with Clinically Compliant Biomaterials. Advanced Functional Materials 25, 7406-7417, doi:10.1002/adfm.201503423 (2015).

Marino, D., Luginbuhl, J., Scola, S., Meuli, M. & Reichmann, E. Bioengineering dermo-epidermal skin grafts with blood and lymphatic capillaries. Science translational medicine 6, 221ra214, doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.3006894 (2014).

Minoux, M. & Rijli, F. M. Molecular mechanisms of cranial neural crest cell migration and patterning in craniofacial development. Development 137, 2605-2621, doi:10.1242/dev.040048 (2010).
Methods that will be used:
Isolation methods for chondrocytes and chondrogenic progenitor cells
Standard cell culture
3D cell culture
Standard biochemical methods
Molecular biological methods
Immunological methods
Animal experiments
Cooperation partners:
For this project we collaborate with the ETH Zürich (Zenobi-Wong group), with the Tissue Biology Research Unit at the Universitäts-Kinderspital Zürich (Reichmann group) and with the Friedrich Miescher Institute (Rijli group) in Basel
Personal qualifications:
Interested candidates should hold a university degree (Master or equivalent) in life sciences. Experience in molecular and cell biology is essential. Expertise in immunological and standard molecular biological methods is required. We expect excellent oral and written communication skills, strong team working skills and an ability to take initiative to solve problems. Expertise in working with rabbits is of advantage, but not required.
Regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, microtia, chondrocytes, skin grafts, bioprinted cartilage auricle, engineered composite auricles