→ Apply before 01/10/2023 (DD/MM/YYYY) 23:59 (Brussels Time)
→ Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
→ Department: GE38 - Structuur en Herstel van de Mens
→ Occupancy rate:100%
→ Number of positions: 1
→ Type of employment: Contract of unlimited duration with clause
→ Term of assignment:
→ Wage scale: PD1 to PD4 (doctoral degree)
→ Required diploma: PhD
ABOUT GHENT UNIVERSITY
Ghent University is a world of its own. Employing more than 8,000 people, it is actively involved in education and research, management and administration, as well as technical and social service provision on a daily basis. It is one of the largest, most exciting employers in the area and offers great career opportunities. With its 11 faculties and more than 80 departments offering state-of-the-art study programmes grounded in research in a wide range of academic fields, Ghent University is a logical choice for its staff and students.
ABOUT THE GHENT-FERTILIITY AND STEM CELL TEAM (G-FaST)
The G-FaST, Department for Reproductive Medicine, engages in both fundamental stem cell research and clinical translational IVF research, focusing on infertile couples, who cannot be helped by the current available treatments of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). For infertile patients, we are exploring the generation of de novo patient-specific gametes from pluripotent stem cells or via haploidisation. The clinical translation research addresses several hot topics within the field of ART including: failed fertilization or embryonic developmental arrest after ICSI; and the Nuclear Transfer technology to overcome mitochondrial diseases or female-related infertility. Combining expertise in pluripotent stem cells and embryology, we also started the topic of CRISPR/Cas gene editing in mouse and human embryos, to assess the function of genes or correct mutations. While embryology, ART techniques and stem cell culture are frequently used, many molecular biology techniques are required in our research, in collaboration with the Center of Medical Genetics at our Faculty under Prof. Björn Menten and Prof. Paul Coucke.
Prof. Björn Heindryckx coordinates the G-FaST, consisting of a group of 8 PhD students, a post-doc and a research assistant, in close collaboration with the clinical Department for Reproductive Medicine/UZ Ghent headed by Prof. Dominic Stoop, and has a strong track-record in translating their basic research into clinical applications.
The candidate will be mostly involved in a recently obtained FWO/TBM research project entitled “Nuclear Transfer for female-related infertility and mitochondrial diseases”. This proposal aims at the (pre-)clinical validation of the novel Nuclear Transfer (NT) technology in ART for two specific indications, being (1) female-related infertility and (2) mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) diseases. The NT technology involves the transfer of the nuclear genome from a patient’s diseased or inferior quality oocyte or zygote to a healthy donor counterpart from which the nuclear genome was removed. The resulting NT embryos contain the nuclear DNA from both prospective parents and the cytoplasm, including the mtDNA, originating from the donor. More recently, the NT technology has also been proposed to overcome specific female-related infertility indications that could be attributed to inferior oocyte quality, for which generally oocyte donation is advised. Both experimental evidence on animal and human models, as well as recently published clinical data on a limited number of patients, support the feasibility of this approach. We first aim to further validate the NT technology for specific infertility disorders in a pre-clinical context, by extensive -omics analyses (genomic, transcriptomics, epigenomics); and compare different NT strategies in patients with mtDNA diseases. Thereafter, NT will be clinically implemented, firstly for infertility, secondly for mitochondrial diseases.
Within G-FaST, you will be responsible for:
WHAT WE ARE LOOKING FOR
Background and experience
Scientific knowledge and skills
Personal knowledge and skills
WHAT WE CAN OFFER YOU
Apply online through the e-recruitment system before the application deadline (see above). We do not accept late applications or applications that are not submitted through the online system.
Your application must include the following documents:
Note that the maximum file size for each field is 10 MB.
As Ghent University maintains an equal opportunities and diversity policy, everyone is encouraged to apply for this position.
For more information about this vacancy, please contact Prof. Björn Heindryckx (+32(0)9 3324748; Bjorn.Heindryckx@UGent.be).
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