PhD student (m/f) in Bio-Nanotechnology
School of Life Sciences FHNW, Institute for Chemistry and Bioanalytics
Teaching, research and practice - we connect
Your tasks
In your PhD project you will target tumor cells with biocompatible gold nanoparticles (GNP) on their overexpressed epidermal growth factor receptors (EGFR) and confirm it with surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). This is aimed as a technique for intraoperative visualization of tumors and can support the surgeon in seeing the edge of the tumor. We aim to determine the effect of GNP sizes and shapes to optimize target selectivity and distribution. In order to overcome the SERS intensity limit caused by GNP diameter we intend to use assemblies of small GNPs connected with different linker molecules. GNP assemblies are finally tested on cell culture and zebrafish xerografts. The project is a collaboration between the Ovarian Cancer Research group of Prof. Dr. V. Heinzelmann (University Basel), Dr. S. Saxer (NanoLab FHNW) and Prof. Dr. S. McNeil from Nanopharmaceutical & Regulatory Science group (University of Basel). Your main tasks include:
  • Synthesize and fully characterize anti-EGFR GNPs and assemblies in the new facilities of the FHNW NanoLab and test in cell culture or xenograft model of the Ovarian Cancer Research group with the latest state-of-the-art methods and equipment
  • Independently manage own projects, prepare a concept, organize and perform experiments in the two laboratories
  • Organize and present the progress at individual group meetings and regularly scheduled project meetings with all supervisors
  • Interact with scientific community at national and international conferences/symposia and publish the results in internationally accepted journals
The position is initially limited to 3 years.
Your profile
  • Master of Science in nanotechnology, chemistry or biochemistry
  • experience in working in a biochemistry (inclusive cell culture) or chemistry laboratory
  • good written and spoken English language skills
  • a passion for biochemistry with a flair for nano-engineering
  • highly motivated to study cell-SERS nanoprobe interactions in a challenging environment
  • interest in interdisciplinary projects
Your prospects:
The FHNW School of Life Sciences offers state-of-the-art technical, laboratory and office facilities. Contributing to the school’s highly motivating working environment – which is second to none – are its collaboration with a large number of companies and institutions in Switzerland and abroad, a widely varied programme of scientific events, and daily contact with young students in research and teaching. The FHNW is also committed to equal opportunities and the compatibility of private and professional life.
Your benefits:


Wide range of university sports

Cultural programme of lectures, concerts, theatre and films

Established implementation of equal pay

Thesis projects for the targeted promotion of doctorates

Annual working time (42 hours/week) with the option of part-time and teleworking

Mentoring programme for career development

Start Date: by agreement.
Your workplace
Hochschule für Life Sciences FHNW
Hofackerstrasse 30
4132 Muttenz
Any questions?
About the position:

Dr. Sina Saxer, Research Associate and Lecturer, Contact: +41 61 228 57 01

About the recruiting process:

Cristina Kabas, HR Assistant, Contact: +41 61 228 54 02

Will you soon belong to our team? We look forward to your application.
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