dr. Jana Ramon (PhD)
Post-doctoral researcher – 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 plasma membrane barrier needs to be overcome, which is considered a major hurdle for biological macromolecules often exhibiting unfavorable characteristics like size, charge and stability.
One way is by disrupting the plasma membrane using laser-induced vapor nanobubbles (VNBs), which makes use of photothermal nanoparticles and pulsed laser light. Upon pulsed 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 plasma membrane leading to transient pore formation. During her PhD, Jana focused on employing laser-induced VNBs for several applications. On the one hand, she applied laser-induced VNBs for intracellular delivery and explored the potential to induce regulated (RCD) and/or immunogenic cell death (ICD). On the other hand, she investigated the potential of laser-induced VNBs to load extracellular vesicles (EVs) via the cell’s cytosol.
During her postdoctoral fellowship, Jana will continue to investigate the potential of laser-induced VNBs for loading of EVs with exogenous cargo molecules. To do so, the exogenous molecules are first loaded into the cell’s cytosol laser-induced VNBs, after which they can be encapsulated into EVs. Given the versatility of this technique, both therapeutic and diagnostic compounds can be loaded. By minimally interfering with the surface properties of EVs, this strategy could serve as a platform technology to study intercellular communication within the tumor microenvironment and thereby support the development of anticancer strategies.
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. In the same year, she obtained a PhD fellowship of the Research Foundation-Flanders (FWO aspirant).
In February 2023, she obtained her PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences and is currently working as a postdoctoral fellow in the same lab.
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