ORGANISATION/COMPANYLaboratoire Charles Coulomb, UMR 5221 CNRS-UM
RESEARCH FIELDChemistryPhysicsTechnology › Materials technology
RESEARCHER PROFILEFirst Stage Researcher (R1)Recognised Researcher (R2)Established Researcher (R3)Leading Researcher (R4)
APPLICATION DEADLINE16/05/2021 00:00 - Europe/Brussels
LOCATIONFrance › Montpellier
TYPE OF CONTRACTTemporary
OFFER STARTING DATE06/09/2021
How to reproduce the mechanical behaviour of biological tissues? The extracellular matrix is a water swollen biopolymer network that interacts with cells, it can sense forces and reorganise without breaking. Synthetic hydrogels can serve as model extracellular matrix to study cells or build biomedical devices. However their mechanical properties remain far from that of their biological counterparts. Despite recent progress to produce biocompatible hydrogels we lack sufficient control over their supramolecular architecture to mimic natural ones. We aim to overcome this challenge in order to rationalize the mechanics of biological tissues and design better biomedical devices.
The proposed project rely on our expertise to create hydrogels using DNA. Complementary DNA strands self-assemble to form a double helix, we can use this property to control the supramolecular architectures of DNA hydrogels. R. Merindol developed techniques to scale-up DNA self-assembly and produce macroscopic hydrogels that change fluorescence under stress (i.e. Mechanofluorescent).1 This PhD project will push this design to the next level by incorporating new supramolecular features in the hydrogel in order to control their reorganisation. We will further develop experimental set-up to quantitatively map stress distribution in 2D and 3D. Thereby we aim to rationalize the role of reorganisation on hydrogel mechanics and create a synthetic extracellular matrix that can report the forces exerted by cells.
Ref.  R. Merindol, G. Delechiave, L. Heinen, L. H. Catalani, A. Walther, Nat. Commun. 2019, 10, 528.
Funding category: Contrat doctoral
2135 € Brut
PHD title: Doctorat de physique
PHD Country: France
Master in Material Science, Physical Chemistry, Physics or Chemistry. The candidate will be working on a challenging multidisciplinary project at the interface of physics, chemistry and biology.
EURAXESS offer ID: 630140
Posting organisation offer ID: 97630
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