PhD position available – development of milk extracellular vesicles for therapeutic applications

Estonian University of Life Sciences    Institute of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Sciences

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are tiny lipid bilayer membrane vesicles in the range of 50 to 1000 nano-metres. All cells seem to produce EVs and they exist in nearly all bio-fluids. The exact function of EVS in biological systems is not known. They seem responsible for cell-to-cell communication. EVS have also been reported to have different effects from immunomodulatory effects to protection of cells and supporting the cell viability. Milk is a natural biofluid that have been consumed by humans from ancient times. Milk is the only food that has evolved to meet the nutritional needs of newborns, supporting growth and development while also being a significant source of nutrients in adults. There is a considerable interest in milk-derived EVs and their cargoes. Cow milk EVs influence biological functions by regulating biochemical pathways and/or interactions with the host’s gut microbiome. Several researchers have reported the effects of milk EVs on the gut microbiota, in the immune response, in diseases such as cancer, and in other aspects of cell biology. Thus, the main aim of the project is to facilitate development of milk EV based therapeutic applications for treatment of different digestive tract anomalies and diseases. To achieve this goal, we aim to test several hypothesises to further progress cow milk EVs application as a treatment for human digestive tract diseases and anomalies using advanced in vitro experimental work.

Qualification of the candidate:

  • Competition is open for both local and international students who fulfil the basic doctoral school admission requirements stipulated by the Estonian University of Life Sciences, Estonia. Please visit the web link for more information:
  • Possession of the first degree plus master’s degree level qualification in human medicine, veterinary medicine, agriculture, animal science or biological sciences streams.
  • Experience in cell cultures and basic cell & molecular biology techniques.
  • Experience in working with extracellular vesicles (not essential but preferable).
  • Experience in transcriptomics and proteomics work with basic bioinformatics knowledge (not essential but preferable).
  • Experience in publishing research outcomes in conferences and reputed scientific journals (not essential but preferable).
  • Fluency in writing and speaking in English.

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