Netherlands:PhD student ‘Universal influenza vaccines: From Bench to Bedside’ at University Medical Centre Groningen

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Job description

The main tasks of the PhD student in this project will be:
– To first to set up biofilms models to mimic cystic fibrosis and burn wound infections.
– Study the efficacy of different AMPs (produced by other collaborators) and AMPs encapsulated in nano-formulations in-vitro.
– In-vivo test the efficacy on biofilms using a mouse model.

Summarize and report key analytical findings in both oral and written form at work meetings, international scientific conferences and scientific publications. The project will lead into a PhD thesis after 4 years of work.


Candidates must have the following requirements:
– a master’s degree in Microbiology, Chemistry, Biomedical Sciences or Biotechnology,
– research experience in the area of biofilms is desirable,
– interest in biofilm related work,
– excellent team working skills, enthusiastic, ambitious, and a team player.

The UMCG has a preventive Hepatitis B policy. You may be required to build up sufficient protection against Hepatitis B before you can be appointed. Vaccination is provided by the UMCG if necessary.

Conditions of employment

– A fulltime PhD student position for a fixed period of 4 years.
– A salary of € 2.162,- gross per month in the first year up to a maximum of € 2.770,- gross per month in the last year.
– Conditions of employment comply with the Collective Labour Agreement for Medical Centers (CAO-UMC).




Biomedical Engineering

Biomedical Engineering at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) is an energetic, dynamic and international research environment, which uses state-of-the-art technologies. The main interest of this department is to understand the biocompatibility and infections caused potential of biomaterials, and furthermore discover preventive strategies. Since biomaterial induced infections are where the microbes are in the biofilm mode – un derstanding the comparative microbial and tissue cell adhesion to biomaterials and then growth of a mature biofilm is the scope of our research interests.

Research project
The project (Innovative Nanoformulation of Antimicrobial Peptides to Treat Bacterial Infectious Diseases) is funded by the European Union under its Nanoscience, Nanotechnologies, Materials and New production Technologies program of FP7.
Resistance to traditional antibiotics is a rapidly increasing problem that in a few years could make infections impossible to treat and bring the state of medical care back to the pre-antibiotic era from the beginning of the last century. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have a huge potential as new therapeutics against infectious diseases as they are less prone to induce resistance due to their fast and non-specific mechanism of action. The aim of this project is to explore a number of innovative formulation and delivery strategies based on nanotechnology in order to improve the efficiency and stability of AMPs in clinical development. Functional delivery systems that can be applied directly on the infected site will be developed for treatment of infections in skin and burn wounds, as well as lung infections. Formulation and delivery strategies to prevent and treat biofilm formation related to these conditions will be developed. The effect of nanoformulated AMPs will be evaluated with state-of-the art in vitro models and in vivo models.

Additional information

Dr. Prashant Kumar Sharma, projectleader
+31 (0)50 363 31 60
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