10 June 2020

The Arnes group offers MSc students master thesis opportunities

master's project

The Arnes group at DanStem/ BRIC is seeking a highly motivated master students to work on stem cell biology and cancer. 

The group

Research in our group aims to understand the genome functions that drive dynamic changes in cellular states in pancreas development and cancer. Terminally differentiated cells in the pancreas have the plasticity to adopt alternative cell fates through an acinar to ductal metaplasia. This cellular plasticity, although considered a physiological process of tissue homeostasis, renders the tissue susceptible to cancer. In this project we will use human embryonic stem cells (hESC) to mimic the cellular state that facilitates tumor initiation in the pancreas. Your goal will be to define the mechanism controlling cell fate decisions. You will characterize noncoding regulatory elements, particularly enhancer-associated long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs).

The research project(s) 

You will use a novel model of precancerous lesion using hESC. In this model we can induce the most prevalent mutation in pancreatic cancer (KRAS) in pancreas progenitors. After induction, these cells generate tumors with the same morphological characteristics of the human disease. You will bring together developmental and cancer biology, and employ classical genetics, molecular and cellular biology, and innovative bioinformatics to understand changes in cellular states in pancreas development. You will use a combination of gene expression, chromatin accessibility, and single-cell RNA sequencing in time-resolved experiments. You will use candidate approaches to interrogate the role of enhancer-associated lncRNAs in the induction of pancreatic cancer using human embryonic stem cells. We will combine the results with comparative human data.

Previous experience with bioinformatics data analysis will be highly appreciated but it is not mandatory. The project will be carried out at BRIC located at the 3rd floor at the Biocenter.

Find out more about the Arnes group HERE

For further information regarding the position please contact Luis Arnes (luis.arnes@bric.ku.dk)