What if a material could give cues about a patient’s rehabilitation without the use of electronics? This project aims to control (macro)molecular architecture and synthesis in order to create materials that react under specific bodily conditions present within diseased patients. We aim to do that using interdisciplinary approaches bridging organic chemistry, material science and biomedical engineering all within a team that strives for innovation and tangible solutions that can meet the demands of real world problems.

Keywords: monomer synthesis, polymers, drug delivery, smart materials, healthcare

Description: following surgery hospital routine imposes close monitoring of patients for potential health related deteriorations. Typically this is achieved via close observation of patients in qualitative and quantitative ways (blood, temperature, urine tests). Unfortunately and for many conditions tests performed on rehabilitating patients are not adequate making discovery of deteriorations delayed and complications unavoidable. This project aims to bring this kind of confusion to an end using materials chemistry, polymer design, and biomedical engineering. The ideal student profile required for this opening is that of a passionate and independent thinking MSc or BSc student preferably applying for their thesis or fully time internship (chemist, biochemist, polymer chemist, biomedical engineer, materials engineer, nanotechnologist, or related). The ideal candidate has previous experience working in research (internship experience or similar) or is very passionate about science and can manage well communicating with people from very different backgrounds. The day to day of this project will include making new materials, testing them under most relevant conditions and talking with surgeons and medical personnel in an effort to understand and solve a real world problem.This project aims at creating a readily applicable smart hydrogel patch sealant that can interface with surgical tools available and can be easily used by practicing surgeons. Innovations at the level of the material formulation, design, patch formation and smart modalities will be central themes to the experimental work including interfacing with surgeons and experimental operating room.

Previous experience or interest to work with hydrogels, film processing, medical materials as well as application engineering and other fields that could relate are of interest to the applying candidate.

This project being interdisciplinary and requiring multifaceted communication between scientists, engineers and surgeons means that successful candidates can be open-minded, good communicators that ideally have an interest, passion or background in applied projects that touch on real world problems.

About NSEL - Nanoparticles Systems Engineering Laboratory

The nanoparticle systems engineering laboratory (NSEL) is headed by Prof. Inge Herrmann and within it chemists, physicists, engineers and surgeons come together to bring tangible solutions to global unaddressed healthcare problems by innovating on the side of molecules and atoms all the way to the creation bulk macroscopic intelligent materials.