Doctoral fellow – Bio-photonic Research Group - Laboratory of General Biochemistry and Physical Pharmacy – Department of Pharmaceutics – Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences – Ghent University
Principal investigator: prof. Kevin Braeckmans (PhD)
Intracellular delivery of exogenous molecules into cells has become a crucial step for many therapeutic applications and fundamental biological research. However, to reach the cytosolic compartment, the cell membrane barriers need to be overcome, which is considered a major hurdle for biological macromolecules often exhibiting unfavorable characteristics like size, charge and stability. Over the years, several strategies have been developed ranging from nanocarrier-mediated to membrane disruption-based methods. Especially for in vitro and ex vivo settings, physical delivery methods are most interesting as they present fast, efficient and safe delivery featuring a broad applicability.
One of these emerging membrane disruption-based techniques is vapor nanobubble (VNB)-mediated photoporation, which makes use of photothermal nanoparticles and pulsed laser light. More specifically, upon laser irradiation the nanoparticles rapidly heat up leading to the evaporation of their surrounding water. Fast expanding VNBs emerge around the nanoparticles that, upon their collapse, impose significant mechanical stress on the cell membrane leading to transient pore formation. Interestingly, the laser diameter can be fine-tuned to such extent that highly-selective single-cell delivery is possible as well.
The research project of Jana employs VNB-mediated photoporation for several applications. More specifically, this technique is used as foundation to answer research questions in the field of cancer biology and extracellular vesicles. Secondly, VNB-mediated photoporation is explored for its applicability in the treatment of melanoma cancers.
Jana started a bachelor in Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2013.
She subsequently obtained her Master’s degree in Drug Development in 2018 with Summa cum Laude.
In October 2018, Jana started her PhD in the Laboratory of General Biochemistry and Physical Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutics.
In the same year, she obtained a Ph.D. fellowship of the Research Foundation-Flanders (FWO aspirant).
Contact & links
- Lab address: Ottergemsesteenweg 460, 9000 Ghent
- Laboratory of General Biochemistry and Physical Pharmacy
- Jana Ramon is interested to receive invitations for presentations or talks