A POSTDOCTORAL POSITION is available at the Translational Cancer Medicine research group led by Academy professor Kari Alitalo, in the Faculty of Medicine in the University of Helsinki, Finland. The Alitalo group is located in Biomedicum Helsinki of the Academic Medical Center Helsinki (Meilahti campus), which ranks at the top 10 medical campuses in Europe and among the top 50 globally. Alitalo leads the Translational Cancer Medicine Program and the Wihuri Research Institute, which both provide a multidisciplinary research environment for basic and translational research with state-of-the-art facilities, cutting-edge technologies and synergistic expertise of several research groups.
The position is funded by the European Research Council (ERC) Horizon 2020 program ”BrainDrain, Translational implications of the discovery of brain- draining lymphatics”. In 2010, 800 billion Euros was spent on brain diseases in Europe and the cost is expected to increase due to the aging population. The aim of the BrainDrain is to alleviate this disease burden and reassess current concepts about cerebrovascular dynamics, fluid drainage and cellular trafficking in physiological conditions and in Alzheimer’s disease and neuroinflammation models in mice and in postmortem tissues in humans.
The main objectives concern neurovascular interactions in CNS diseases, with questions related to 1) The development and properties of meningeal lymphatic vessels and how they are formed and maintained. 2) Blood brain barrier and the clearance of macromolecules and protein aggregates in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease, and in mice that lack the newly discovered meningeal lymphatic drainage system. 3) Examine if growth factors modulate CNS vasculature, especially if expansion of lymphatic vessels alleviates the parenchymal accumulation of neurotoxic molecules and brain disease pathogenesis and brain damage after traumatic brain injury.
We are looking for a highly motivated postdoctoral research scientists with a strong enthusiasm towards science. A successful candidate should have a PhD degree and strong background in molecular and cell biology, cellular biochemistry, genetics, or other related discipline. Previous experience with biomedical research is considered an advantage and expertise in bioinformatics and mouse models is beneficial. Excellent communication skills (in English), and technical and organizational abilities are expected.
Research in the laboratory led by Academy Professor Kari Alitalo focuses on Vascular biology related to human diseases, discovery of new disease-related functions of vascular endothelial growth factors, angiopoietins, angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis. The goal is to use this knowledge for establishment of preclinical models for more effective targeted therapies on these diseases.