Master Thesis Project (Masterarbeit) “Medium optimization for a gut-lung multi organ-on-chip system” (f/m/d)

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The mission of the Berlin Institute of Health at Charité (BIH) is medical translation: transferring biomedical research findings into novel approaches to personalized prediction, prevention, diagnostics and therapies and, conversely, using clinical observations to develop new research ideas. The aim is to deliver relevant medical benefits to patients and the population at large. The BIH was founded in 2013 and is funded 90 percent by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and 10 percent by the State of Berlin. Since 2021 the BIH has been integrated into Charité as its so-called third pillar.
For the BIH we are looking from the 01-10-2023 on temporary for a
Master Thesis Project (Masterarbeit) “Medium optimization for a gut-lung multi organ-on-chip system” (f/m/d)
The Hedtrich Lab is recruiting a Master student to optimize medium composition for a multi organ-on-chip system to study the gut-lung axis. We are a young and enthusiastic group looking for people willing to contribute to our exciting research. The Hedtrich Lab is located in the just recently inaugurated research building Kaethe-Beutler-Haus on Berlin-Buch campus which is in close proximity to clinical departments, the MDC, and the FMP.
This Master Project projects falls within project A05 of the SFB 1449 whose overall aim is to study the interdependency of the gut-lung-axis and hydrogel barrier in health and disease. Experimental and epidemiological data show a pivotal role of inter-tissue communication between the intestinal and the lung epithelium in health and disease, a crosstalk that has been termed the ‘gut–lung axis’ (GLA). So far, gut-microbe-derived components and metabolites such as short-chain fatty acids have been identified as putative mediators of the GLA. Yet, mechanism beyond the microbiome are highly likely and many questions remain as to how this crosstalk impacts lung and intestinal hydrogels and, thus potentially contributes to the manifestation of comorbidities. Therefore, the Hedtrich Lab proposes the development of a microphysiological system (MPS) allowing a long-term co-cultivation of intestinal and pulmonary epithelial tissue models to emulate the GLA in a human-based ex vivo system to test that the gut-lung crosstalk governs the composition and function of epithelial hydrogels.

Your job description:

The Master Project should unravel the key components and medium formulation allowing for the co-culture of our intestinal and lung model. This investigation is crucial as each tissue requires very specific supplements which are not shared between different types of organs. Therefore, medium optimization currently represents one of the biggest struggles when developing multi-models. Furthermore, your main tasks are:
  • Literature research
  • Tissue culture of lung and intestinal cells
  • Optimization of co-culture medium formulation via DOE (Design Of Experiment)
  • Biochemical assays

Your profile:

  • A background in biology, biochemistry or biotechnology
  • Fluent in English
  • Highly motivated
  • Prior experience in tissue culture

We offer:

  • Constant support and guidance by PhD students as well as senior lab members
  • Teaching of tissue culture and biochemical assay methods
  • A state of the art lab in the newly inaugurated KBH building in Campus Buch
  • A pleasant and friendly working atmosphere

We live diversity!

BIH strongly encourages qualified women to apply. Applications from people with a migration background who meet the hiring requirements are expressly encouraged. Applicants with severe disabilities and those of equal status will be given preferential consideration in the event of equal suitability.
Please submit your application via the BIH career portal by 30.09.2023, quoting the reference number INT-B-15.08.23.
For technical queries regarding the job advertisement, please contact Mr Alessandro Bentivogli ( and Mr Konrad Schmidt (
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