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hvoosterwyck48
06-23-2008, 07:19 PM
Development of an individual cell-based model of cell aggregates in
bone tissue engineering

The Divisions MeBioS (Mechatronics, Biostatistics and Sensors) and
BMGO (Biomechanics and Engineering Design) of the K.U.Leuven are
offering a four year scholarship in computational cell biology.

Computational biology and tissue engineering:
Progress in the biosciences will increasingly depend on deep and
broad integration of mathematical analysis into studies at all levels
of biological organization. All levels of organization offer
attractive opportunities for mathematical applications, from
biomolecules, individual cells, tissue, organ and whole organisms to
large ecosystems.
Individual cell-based models (IBM's, also called agent-based models)
use explicit representations of individual cells to model the
organisation of multi-cellular aggregates. Two approaches in
individual cell-based modelling can be distinguished. In the first
approach, the cellular automaton models, each cell is represented
either by one or by many lattice sites. In the second approach, the
off-lattice models, cells are modelled as deformable particles.
Off-lattice models permit to include experimental information on
different spatial and temporal scales. Considerable experience in
working with off-lattice models for the simulation of active
particles is present at MeBioS. In this respect, the general purpose
software platform DEMETER has been developed in C++.

Tasks:
development of an off-lattice random-walk model which enables to
incorporate various cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions, as well
as the influence of mechanical and biological stimuli in order to
model the in vitro behaviour of cell aggregates.
validation of the theoretical behaviour of these cell aggregates
generated by computer simulations of the discrete model with in vitro
experiments (in collaboration with the divisions of Rheumatology and
Endocrinology at the university hospital).
application of the models to broaden state of the art insight in the
design of in vitro experiments and their tissue engineering applications
preparation of a PhD in the above mentioned subject.
Publication of the results in leading international journals

Requirements:
Master Degree in Engineering (Biological, Biomechanical, Chemical,
Biosystems,..) , Master Degree in Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry or
Biology with an affinity for computational biology
Active interest in life science applications and computational cell biology
Ability to operate in an international, interdisciplinary research team
Be fluent in oral and written English.

Contact persons:

Applicants can send their CV to the following contact persons:

Prof. Herman Ramon
K.U.Leuven
Faculty of Bioscience Engineering
Department BIOSYST, Division MeBioS
Kasteelpark Arenberg 30, 3001 Leuven
Tel.: +32 16321446
e-mail: herman.ramon@biw.kuleuven.be

Prof. Hans Van Oosterwyck
K.U.Leuven
Faculty of Engineering
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Division BMGO
Celestijnenlaan 300C - PB 2419
Tel.: +32 16327067
e-mail: hans.vanoosterwyck@mech.kuleuven.be

Dr. Liesbet Geris
K.U.Leuven
Faculty of Engineering
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Division BMGO
Celestijnenlaan 300C - PB 2419
Tel.: +32 16327056
e-mail: liesbet.geris@mech.kuleuven.be


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