Phototunable Hydrogel Synthesis (Forschungspraktikum)

Project Description:

Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of sight loss worldwide and an estimated 77 million people will be affected in Europe by 2050. Some genetic causes are known, and current understanding of the pathogenesis is only based on molecular factors. The disease remains poorly understood and effective treatments are lacking. The main hallmark of the disease is age-related remodelling of the retinal extracellular matrix (ECM), a diverse protein-rich environment that is pivotal for maintaining mechanics and function in most tissues. However, how such extracellular matrix changes relate to disease progression compared with normal ageing of the retina remains to be investigated since no relevant model is available. The REMeD group together with De Laporte’s expertise aim to build a phototunable hydrogel system to model the topological ECM changes occurring in retina in ageing and disease. The hydrogel will be used as culture substrate for retinal organoids in the future. This research internship aims to support the synthesis of the photosensitive crosslinker and the further characterization of the hydrogels

Your taks and responsibilities:

  • Synthesis of various photodegradable crosslinkers
  • Synthesis of crosslinkers for post functionalization
  • Synthesis of hydrogels and their mechanical characterization
  • Cell compatibility assays

This is what we offer you:

  • Exciting and challenging tasks as well as development opportunities in a modern scientific organization
  • An open and team-oriented working atmosphere in an international environment
  • The support of an experienced team

Your profile:

  • Enrolled in a master’s degree program in chemistry, chemical engineering, or related field of study.
  • Experience with chemical synthesis and good laboratory practice.
  • Strong interest in working in a high pace environment and a multidisciplinary project is essential.
  • Team-player and a strong communicator both in written and verbal (English fluency is required).
  • You enjoy solving problems and have an “out of the box” approach



Für weitere Informationen wenden Sie sich bitte an
Assoziierter Wissenschaftler, RWTH Aachen

Dr. Jacopo Di Russo

+49-241 80-88974
E-Mail Adresse anzeigen
Portrait Jacopo di Russo

If you are interested please send a short CV and transcripts via email at

For more information about the group activity, please visit