Category Archives: Job Opportunities

PhD position on computational modeling of mechanically-driven sprouting angiogenesis @Charité

Background and scope of the work

Angiogenesis, the growth of new blood vessels from pre-existing vessels, constitutes a fundamental physiological process during the regeneration of many tissues, including bone. In a DFG-funded collaborative project, we are using a combined experimental/computational approach to investigate how mechanical forces mediate angiogenesis during bone repair. As part of this project, a PhD position is available to investigate the role of mechanical strains on the growth of new blood vessels using mechano-biological computational models.  

Tasks

You will develop computer models of sprouting angiogenesis taking into account the role played by chemical and mechanical signals in vessel patterning. You will work in close collaboration with project partners working in in vitro and in vivo models to inform and validate the computer models.

Your profile

  • Master Degree in Mechanical Engineering, Computational Biomechanics, Computational Biology or a related discipline
  • Strong programming skills
  • Knowledge of finite element analysis
  • High motivation, curiosity and commitment to scientific excellence
  • Team player skills and enthusiasm to work in a multi-disciplinary, collaborative environment
  • Excellent command in written and spoken English
  • Independent and responsible attitude, collaborative spirit

What we provide

This position is available for a period of three years with the possibility to be extended if new funding is available. You will work in a friendly team and in a unique research environment. As a PhD student, you will be associated to the Berlin-Brandenburg School of Regenerative Therapies (www.bsrt.de) and benefit from the interaction with international scientists.

Starting date: as soon as possible.

Contact:

If you are interested, please send your CV, motivation letter and two references to: Prof. Sara Checa (sara.checa@charite.de)

Computational modelling for personalised treatment of osteoarthritis @University of Edinburgh

The primary aim of the study is to establish the inter-relationship of initial cartilage quality, subchondral bone stiffness and loading scenarios (due to different physiological activies which result in loads with varying magnitudes, frequencies and strain rates) by using computational models to optimise osteoarthritis treatment.

Outline: The research will be conducted by using data from mechanical testing and imaging of testing clinical samples in conjunction with available physiological loading data. Novel computational simulations using the finite element method will be employed. A range of cartilage properties will be considered; variation of properties from normal to cartilage weakened by infection or inflammation will be considered. Similarly the material properties of the subchondral bone will be varied to represent subchondral sclerosis. The findings of this project will enable the interplay of bone and cartilage properties and loading to be considered in different patients. This will indicate the leading mechanism of joint failure in different patients, which will allow us to personalize the treatment inline with the principles of precision medicine

Project supervisors: Professor Pankaj Pankaj and Professor Hamish Simpson, The University of Edinburgh
Project description: https://www.ed.ac.uk/usher/precision-medicine/project-opportunities/21-22-projects/novel-computational-modelling-for-personalised-tre
To apply: https://www.ed.ac.uk/studying/postgraduate/degrees/index.php?r=site/view&id=919
Application deadline: 7 January 2021
Applicants are encouraged to contact Prof Pankaj Pankaj (pankaj@ed.ac.uk) with their CV prior to applying.

PhD student position at Lund University

We are looking for a PhD student to explore the potential of Neutron scattering for studying soft musculoskeletal tissues and their structural and mechanical changes due to osteoarthritis. The student will be supervised by Prof Hanna Isaksson and Prof Martin Englund and be part of SwedNESS – the Swedish national graduate school for neutron research. 

More information can be found here:
https://lu.varbi.com/en/what:job/jobID:360505/type:job/where:4/apply:1

Post-doc position in the Computational Biomechanics Research Group at University of Glasgow

A one-year postdoc position is available in the Computational Biomechanics Research Group at University of Glasgow. The project is aimed at combining image segmentation with biomechanical calculations and requires experience in scientific code development and nonlinear biomechanics.

For more information on the position, please check https://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/CCF584/research-assistant

and https://my.corehr.com/pls/uogrecruit/erq_jobspec_version_4.jobspec?p_id=044305

More information on my research group can be found at http://userweb.eng.gla.ac.uk/ankush.aggarwal/

and https://www.gla.ac.uk/schools/engineering/staff/ankushaggarwal/

If you have any questions about the position, please email: ankush.aggarwal@glasgow.ac.uk

Postdoc position in wood mechanobiology @ the Institute for Mechanics of Materials and Structures, TU Wien

The growth of trees, and the resulting wood microstructure, is substantially influenced by the mechanical loading to which the respective tree structure is subjected. The Austrian Science Fund (FWF – Fonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung) funds, within the scope of the 1000 ideas programme, a two-year project aiming at the development of computational tools which allow for predicting how and to which extent trees grow under certain mechanical boundary conditions. While so far the field of plant mechanobiology has been mainly driven forward through experimental studies, this project bears the potential of launching a completely new (sub-)field, namely computational plant mechanobiology, by reconciling the theoretical concepts of classical beam mechanics, multiscale wood mechanics, and multiscale systems biology.

More information can be found here: https://www.imws.tuwien.ac.at/fileadmin/mediapool-werkstoffe/Bilder/Forschung/Stellenausschreibung_aktuell.pdf

Research Fellow in Experimental Biotribology of the Human Natural Knee @University of Leeds

Are you an ambitious researcher looking for your next challenge? Do you have an established background in biomedical engineering? Do you want to further your career in one of the UKs leading research intensive Universities?

This project is part of a £4M EPSRC Programme Grant on Optimising Knee therapies, held within the Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (iMBE). The aim of the programme is to develop preclinical testing methods for early-stage treatments for knee osteoarthritis so their performance can be optimised. In the UK, one third of people aged over 45 have sought treatment for osteoarthritis. The knee is the most common site for osteoarthritis and there is a major unmet clinical need for effective earlier stage interventions that delay or prevent the requirement for total knee replacement surgery. Such treatments involve repair or replacement of diseased or damaged tissues in the knee joint, such as the meniscus, or a small region of cartilage and underlying bone.

The aim of this project is to develop, evaluate and apply an experimental simulation model of the natural human knee joint, specifically to investigate the biotribological and biomechanical function of early knee interventions.  Examples of interventions include total meniscus replacement and cartilage repair. You will have a strong background in biotribology, biomechanics, bioengineering or a closely related subject. Due to the environment within the iMBE, you will have a proactive approach to working in a multidisciplinary team with engineers, biologists and clinicians.

More information: https://jobs.leeds.ac.uk/Vacancy.aspx?ref=EPSME1028

Postdoc: Computational modeling of kidney toxin transport @Maastricht University

The department of Cell Biology-Inspired Tissue Engineering (cBITE) at the MERLN Institute for Technology-inspired Regenerative Medicine at Maastricht University in the Netherlands invites applications for a post-doctoral position. The post-doctoral researcher will perform cutting-edge research in computational modeling methods applied to regenerative medicine and more specifically, to kidney toxin transport in microfluidic set-ups, organoid culture systems and/or bioartificial kidney devices.

Regenerative medicine holds the promise to cure many of what are now chronic patients, restoring health rather than protracting decline, bettering the lives of millions and at the same time preventing lifelong, expensive care processes: cure instead of care. More specifically, at present, dialysis and transplantation are the only treatment options for end-stage kidney disease. In the Netherlands alone, 6,500 people currently depend on dialysis, approximately 1,300 of which will die this year. Regenerative medicine offers an alternative treatment in the form of a bioengineered kidney. As a first step, the partners of RegMed XB will work towards creating a functional subunit of a bioengineered kidney. This functional subunit is the nephron, of which there are approximately one million in the adult kidney. In order to inform the in vitro experiments as well as design a bioartificial kidney as an intermediate step towards a fully bioengineered kidney, this project will use computational models to simulate toxin transport and calculate the flow and geometry requirements for adequate toxin removal in various set-ups: microfluidic, organoid culture systems and bioartificial devices.

More information can be found at: https://www.academictransfer.com/en/294108/postdoc-computational-modeling-of-kidney-toxin-transport/

POSTDOC position at SayFood, Thiverval-Grignon, France: Quantitative ultrasound for the investigation of tongue-food interactions during oral processing.

Context: In the framework of the ANR project QUSToFood (ANR-17-CE21-0004), a postdoctoral position is open at UMR SayFood. QUSToFood proposes to use Quantitative Ultrasound (QUS) methods for the study of texture perceptions resulting from the mechanical interactions between the tongue and the palate during the oral processing of food. These interactions induce the stimulation of tongue mechanoreceptors and enable the continuous evaluation of the mechanical status of food all along oral processing (from introduction into the mouth to the triggering of swallowing in safe and comfortable conditions). QUS are non-destructive, non-invasive and provide real-time measurement which can be employed both in vitro and in vivo, directly on the individual. The method developed in QUSToFood could thus help to characterize potential losses of sensory quality induced by food and agro ecological transitions, or to meet pleasure and health criteria for specific populations such as infants with sensory processing disorders or seniors suffering from swallowing disorders.

Keywords: Quantitative ultrasound; Biomechanics; Rheology; Tribology; Food; Tongue; Oral processing; Texture


Candidate: The ideal candidate must have completed a PhD in the field of physics, mechanics, biomedical or food engineering. Experience and interest in signal and image processing, and in the in-house design of experimental systems would be an advantage. In all cases, the candidate must have a strong interest and aptitude for multidisciplinary approaches, as this project combines biomechanics, acoustics, rheology, tribology, instrumentation, signal and image processing, food science and sensory analysis.

Contract and location: This contract is for 24 months and the start date is flexible, but shall not be later than January 1, 2021. The gross salary will be from 2500€, depending on the number of years after PhD. The project will be carried out in the labs of UMR SayFood located in the AgroParisTech center of Thiverval-Grignon (a short bus ride from the “Plaisir Grignon” train station, which serves the center of Paris in 25 min). The relocation of the laboratories to a new site in Palaiseau is planned for the second half of the year 2022. The work schedule will be adapted accordingly.


Application: The selection process will start immediately and go on until the position is filled. To apply or inquire further, please contact Vincent Mathieu at vincent.mathieu@inrae.fr. Please include a C.V. and a letter of motivation, along with relevant publications and the name of references.

More information can be found here:

8 PhD positions in Intervertebral disc Biomechanics and Mechanobiology – H2020 ITN Disc4All

The European community requires early stage researchers (ESRs) who can work across the boundaries of traditional disciplines, integrating experimental and in silico approaches to understand and manage highly prevalent multifactorial disorders, such as musculoskeletal disorders. The Disc4All training network utilises intervertebral disc degeneration (LDD) leading to low back pain (LBP) as a relevant application for the integration of data and computational simulations in translational medicine, to enable rational interpretations of the complexity of the interactions that eventually lead to symptoms.


LBP is the largest cause of morbidity worldwide, yet there remains controversy as to the specific cause leading to poor treatment options and prognosis. LDD is reported to account for 50% of LBP in young adults, but the interplay of factors from genetics, environmental, cellular responses and social and psychological factors is poorly understood. Unfortunately, the integration of such data into a holistic and rational map of degenerative processes and risk factors has not been achieved, requiring creation of professional cross-competencies, which current training programmes in biomedicine, biomedical engineering and translational medicine fail to address, individually.


Disc4All aims to tackle this issue through collaborative expertise of clinicians; computational physicists and biologists; geneticists; computer scientists; cell and molecular biologists; microbiologists; bioinformaticians; and industrial partners. It provides interdisciplinary training in data curation and integration; experimental and theoretical/computational modelling; computer algorithm development; tool generation; and model and simulation platforms to transparently integrate primary data for enhanced clinical interpretations through models and simulations. Complementary training is offered in dissemination; project management; research integrity; ethics; regulation; policy; business strategy; and public and patient engagement. The Disc4All ESRs will provide a new generation of internationally mobile professionals with unique skill sets for the development of thriving careers in translational research applied to multifactorial disorders.

This PhD project will address 3D modelling of the lumbar spine from medical images. Methods using deep learning and statistical modelling will be developed to segment the lumbar vertebrae and intervertebral disks in 3D MRI sequences and CT image, and provide 3D subject-specific lumbar spine models from 2D medical images (X-rays or mid-sagital MR images) used in clinical practices. Those methods will be used in combination with finite-element-based simulation methods to develop a diagnosis and predictive tool for intervertebral disk degeneration.

Type of contracts: temporary (36 months)
Job status: full-time
Hours per week: See individual job offers
Offer starting dates: Between November 1st, 2020 and January 31st, 2021
EU Research Framework: H2020 MSCA-ITN-ETN
Marie Curie Grant Agreement Number: 955735

More information:

Post-doc position @University of Pavia: computational mechanical models of soft tissues

We are looking for talented scientists and engineers to join the Synthetic Physiology Lab at the University of Pavia in Italy. Traditional synthetic biologists use DNA parts to program cell function. Similarly, we study how to control tissue function using extracellular matrix (ECM) components. Our first goal is to reverse engineer human heart development in a project funded by the European Research Council and entitled “Synthetic Matrix Biology: Designer matrices to program healthy and diseased myocardial morphogenesis.”


For this project, we are looking for a computational scientist. The ideal candidate will have experience working with mechanical models of soft materials and (dissipative) particle dynamics in synthetic or biological systems. Previous work in the cardiac field, with LAMMPS/Chaste packages, parallel programming (especially if GPU-enabled), or cloud computing is a plus. At the same time, we will be doing things differently than most efforts in this field, so anyone with great scientific programming skills and interested in using particle dynamics to describe cell and tissue mechanics is welcome.

More information in the attachment: