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Laboratory work for GET-IN doctoral network

Doctoral Candidate 10

Development of a lung-on-a-chip (LoC) model to study the effect of rAAV, VLP, VesiCas in health and disease


Host institution of GET-IN MIMETAS

Host institution: MIMETAS, Netherlands

Supervisory team: Dr. Lenie van den Broek (Mimetas), Prof. Marianne Carlon (KU Leuven), Prof. Thomas Hankemeier (PhD promoter, University of Leiden)


This project is situated in the field of validation of viral vectors in human(ized) model systems. The objectives are (1) To establish an immune competent complex LoC including (vascular, stromal, immune and lung epithelium) modelling both the healthy and inflamed state. (2) To evaluate the effect of rAAV and VLP (total of 10) delivered by vasculature (systemic) or by topical (via lung epithelium) on both healthy and inflamed LoC (toxicity and efficiency). (3) To understand the additional complexity induced by disease.

A successful project will result in (1) A fully characterized immune competent (tissue resident macrophages and PBMC) LoC representing both the healthy and diseased lung, induced by triggers of inflammation and damage. (2) Evaluation of toxicity and efficacy of 10 vectors systemic or topical in healthy and diseased LoC models.

Enrolment in Doctoral School: University of Leiden

Planned secondments:

  • Universita degli studi di Trento, Italy (Month 19): Introduction to the use of gene editing tools;

  • Alia Therapeutics, Italy (Month 20): Introduction to the production of VesiCas;

  • KU Leuven, Belgium (Months 28-29): Performance of cystic fibrosis specific assays


  • You hold a master’s degree in biotechnology, biomedical sciences, bioegineering or a related field.

  • You are ambitious, well organized and have excellent communication skills.

  • You are proficient in English both spoken and written

  • You have the ability to work independently and have a critical mindset.

  • You are an enthusiastic and motivated person, eager to participate in network wide training events, international travel and public awareness activities.

  • Willingness to travel


  • Solid knowledge of 3D cell culture and microfluidics 

  • Experience in working with rAAV, VLP or VesiCas

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