Reference : UMR5306-GUIBOR-003
Workplace : VILLEURBANNE
Date of publication : Thursday, July 28, 2022
Type of Contract : FTC Scientist
Contract Period : 13 months
Expected date of employment : 3 October 2022
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : between 2690 and 3821 euros/m gross salary, adapted to the experience of the candidate
Desired level of education : PhD
Experience required : 1 to 4 years
The possibility to control the activation of treatment in space and time in vivo has mobilized considerable efforts in the last 20 years. Externally triggered theranostic prodrugs are one of the most promising tools in this field. In particular, photosensitive prodrugs and nanoobjects showed great promise for spatio-temporally controlled and non-invasive activations in vivo. However, to date, most of the photosensitive systems described can only be activated by UV to near-IR lights. This limits in vivo activation to few millimetres below the skin, which hugely restrains clinical applications, mainly to ophthalmology or skin treatment. To date, there is no non-invasive approach for using light-sensitive materials in deep tissues.
The project takes part in the development of tools able to provide treatment in deep tissues in a space- and time-controlled resolution. Theranostic prodrugs detectable by nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and able to be activated by radiotherapy clinical beams, will be developed. This project, based on activation techniques relying on already-available clinical infrastructures, is consistent within the perspective of future developments of molecular systems for clinical applications. The chemical (prodrug synthesis), physical (activation mechanism, ultrafast spectroscopy) and biological (cell-death mechanism, therapeutic effect) locks will be investigated in collaboration with Institut Curie (Paris, Orsay), Institute of Light and Matter (Villeurbanne) and Laboratory of Chemoinformatics (Strasbourg). The postdoctoral researcher will be based at the Institut Curie (Orsay) in the laboratory “Chemistry and Modelling for Biology of Cancer” and supervised by Dr Guillaume Bort.
The project consists in synthesizing theranostic prodrugs for cancer treatment, adapted for MRI monitoring and for activation upon radiotherapy.
Both physical and biological mechanisms leading to prodrug activation and cell toxicity respectively, will be investigated. A good expertise in synthetic organic chemistry will be valued and combined with various characterization techniques in collaboration with several groups with high expertize in physic and biology.
- Synthesis of theranostic prodrug using organic and inorganic chemistry.
- Prodrug activation and assessment of photophysical properties.
- Investigation of stability/activation/diffusion in biological environments, cytotoxicity and immunogenicity.
- Bringing forward ambitious and realistic design of new compounds, synthesis pathways, characterization techniques; being proactive and taking the lead.
- Participation in the supervision of PhDs, engineers, and trainees.
- Restoring the results to collaborators and communication at international conferences, participation in writing of scientific manuscripts.
You should hold a PhD in organic chemistry, chemical biology or polymer chemistry. Prior experience in cell biology, fluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry, formulation/nanoparticle and/or data analysis (Python, etc.) would be appreciated, but are not essential. We are seeking a motivated individual with well-developed scientific skills and a desire to tackle technical and scientific complex problems to potentially make breakthrough innovation in medical treatments, and with a strong interest in multidisciplinary approach. The ability to work effectively as part of a team and to perform both self-directed and guided research are required. Excellent English oral communication skills, ability to write for publication and a great team spirit are a must.
This project will give great opportunities to develop competences in organic/inorganic chemistry, physics of radiations, cell biology and associated characterization techniques. You are expected to be highly motivated to take advantages to work in a leading research environment, to benefit from a multi-collaboration context, and to potentially participate in the valorisation phases (patent, etc.) of this project.
The position is administratively attached to the Institute of Light and Matter (Institut Lumière Matière - iLM) in Villeurbanne and the experimental work will be carried out at the Institut Curie in Orsay.
iLM is a joint CNRS-University of Lyon 1 research unit located on the Lyon Tech La Doua campus. With approximately 300 employees, including a hundred doctoral students, iLM is a major player in physics and chemistry research in the Auvergne Rhône Alpes region, internationally recognized for the excellence of its research. Fundamental research, responses to major societal challenges and innovation are at the heart of the unit's approach.
A leading player in the fight against cancer, Institut Curie brings together an internationally-renowned Research Center and an advanced Hospital Group that provides care for all types of cancer. Founded in 1909 by Marie Curie, Institut Curie comprises three sites (Paris, Saint-Cloud and Orsay), where more than 3,500 members of staff are dedicated to achieving three objectives: hospital care, scientific research, and the sharing of knowledge and the preservation of legacy. As a private foundation that is recognized as serving the public interest, Institut Curie is supported by donations and grants. This support is used to fund discoveries that will improve treatments and the quality of life of cancer patients. The successful candidate will benefit of a vibrant environment based on the pluri-disciplinary approaches and excellence offered by over 85 research groups constituting the Institut Curie.
The project related to this position is currently supported by several collaborations gathering different expertizes such as molecular observation at the attosecond-timescale resolution using ultrafast spectroscopy, in vitro and in vivo assessment of immunogenicity and therapeutic effect, and development of machine-learning algorithms and density functional theory models. The postdoctoral researcher will be at the interface of all these approaches and will have some opportunities to take part in several collaborative studies.
Constraints and risks
No specific risk. Chemical and biological products will be handled with appropriate safeguards.
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