Research Projects

1. ESR1: Generation and characterisation of human infant kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs)
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in stem cell biology
The researcher is hosted by the University of Liverpool (Partner 1) and has undertaken secondments at Heidelberg (Partner 8) and Freudenberg (Partner 14). The main aim of this project is to generate human KSPC lines from samples of infant renal tissue, and then characterise the cells by investigating various properties, including surface marker expression, gene expression profile and differentiation potential. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Liverpool. Partner contact is Dr Patricia Murray (p.a.murray@liv.ac.uk)


2. ESR2: Generation and characterisation of human adult kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPCs)
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in stem cell biology
The researcher is hosted by the University of Turin (Partner 2) and has undertaken secondments at the Sheba Medical Centre (Partner 9) and Fresenius Kabi (Patner 13). The main aim of this project is to generate human kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC) lines from samples of adult renal tissue, and then characterise the cells by investigating various properties, including surface marker expression, gene expression profile and differentiation potential. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Turin. Partner contact is Prof Benedetta Bussolati (benedetta.bussolati@unito.it)


3. ESR3: Generation and characterisation of human fetal kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPCs)
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in stem cell biology
The researcher is hosted by the University College London (Partner 4) and will undertake secondments at the University of Liverpool (Partner 1) and Fresenius Kabi (Partner 13). The main aim of this project is to generate human kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC) lines from samples of fetal renal tissue, and then characterise the cells by investigating various properties, including surface marker expression, gene expression profile and differentiation potential. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at University College London. Partner contact is Prof Paul Winyard (pwinyard@ich.ucl.ac.uk)


4. ESR4: Generation and characterisation of reprogrammed human kidney stem/progenitor cell KSPCs
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in stem cell biology
The researcher is hosted by the Sheba Medical Centre (Partner 9) and will undertake secondments at the University of Liverpool (Partner 1) and Freudenberg (Partner 14). The main aim of this project is to generate human kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC) lines by reprogramming fully differentiated renal tissue. The reprogrammed cells will then be characterised by investigating various properties, including surface marker expression, gene expression profile and differentiation potential. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the Sheba Medical Centre, Tel Aviv University. Partner contact is Prof Benjamin Dekel (benjamin.dekel@gmail.com)


5. ESR5: Development of biohybrid hydrogels for directed differentiation of established kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs) from adult human kidney
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in biomaterials science
The researcher is hosted by The Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research (IPF; Partner 3) and will undertake secondments at Biomer Technology Ltd (Partner 5) and Spheritech (P10). The main aim of this project is to generate and characterise novel hydrogels modelled on the extra-cellular matrix components of the renal glomerulus and proximal tubule. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at IPF. Partner contact is Prof Carsten Werner (werner@ipfdd.de)


6. ESR6: Investigating the ability of novel biomaterials to regulate the differentiation of kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC) lines derived from various sources of human renal tissue
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in stem cell biology
The researcher is hosted by The Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research (IPF; Partner 3) and will undertake secondments at Biomer Technology Ltd (Partner 5) and the University of Turin (Partner 2). The main aim of this project is to investigate the potential of a range of novel biomaterials to direct the differentiation of KSPCs to specialised renal cells. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at IPF. Partner contact is Prof Carsten Werner (werner@ipfdd.de)


7. ESR7: Investigating the pharmacological properties of kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC)-derived proximal tubule cells (PTCs)
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in cell biology/pharmacology
The researcher is hosted by the University of Liverpool (Partner 1) and will undertake secondments at Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre (Partner 6) and Spheritech (P10). The main aim of this project is to evaluate the pharmacological response of KSPC-derived PTCs to renotoxic and renoprotective drugs. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Liverpool. Partner contact is Dr Patricia Murray (p.a.murray@liv.ac.uk)


8. ESR8: Investigating the pharmacological properties of kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC)-derived podocytes
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in cell biology/pharmacology
The researcher is hosted by the University of Turin (Partner 2) and will undertake secondments at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Partner 7) and Spheritech (P10). The main aim of this project is to evaluate the pharmacological response of KSPC-derived podocytes to renotoxic and renoprotective drugs. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Turin. Partner contact is Prof Benedetta Bussolati (benedetta.bussolati@unito.it)


9. ESR9: Investigating the functionality of kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC)-derived PTCs
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in cell biology/physiology
The researcher is hosted by Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre (RUNMC; Partner 6) and will undertake secondments at Biomer Technology Ltd (Partner 5) and Virginia Commonwealth University (Partner 11). The main aim of this project is to investigate the essential absorptive and secretory functions of cultured KSPC-PTCs. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at RUNMC. Partner contact is Prof. Rosalinde Masereeuw (r.masereeuw@uu.nl)


10. ESR10: Investigating the functionality of kidney stem/progenitor cell (KSPC)-derived podocytes
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in cell biology/physiology
The researcher is hosted by The Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KUL; Partner 7) and will undertake secondments at Biomer Technology Ltd (Partner 5) and the University of Turin (Partner 2). The main aim of this project is to investigate the functionality of KSPC-derived podocytes using physiological assays that will include investigating the insulin-responsive uptake of glucose and the functionality of the renin-angiotensin system The researcher is registered for PhD studies at KUL. Partner contact is Prof Elena Levtchenko (elena.levtchenko@uzleuven.be)


11. ESR11: Development of a novel electronic system for measuring the GFR in rodents
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in electronic engineering
The researcher is hosted by the University of Heidelberg (Partner 8) and will undertake secondments at Freudenberg (Partner 14). In collaboration with Industrial Partners, 13 and 14, Partner 8 (Heidelberg) has recently developed an electronic system that allows the transcutaneous measurement of the glomerular filtration rate GFR in freely moving rats (Schock-Kusch D et al. Kidney Int (2011)). The main aim of this project is to improve this prototype device by changing the optical part of the system to excite and detect fluorescence in the near infrared and to miniaturise the device for use in mice, and to enable the animals to move about freely. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Heiderlberg. Partner contact is Prof Norbert Gretz (Norbert.Gretz@medma.uni-heidelberg.de)


12. ESR12: Investigating the ability of kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs) to promote recovery from experimentally-induced renal disease in rodents
A 3 year position: Early Stage Researcher (PhD student) in renal biology/regenerative medicine
The researcher is hosted by the University of Heidelberg (Partner 8) and will undertake secondments at the University of Turin (Partner 2) and Freudenberg (Partner 14). The main aim of this project is to investigate if KSPCs can delay or prevent the progression of renal disease in rodent models of induced renal injury. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Turin. The researcher is registered for PhD studies at the University of Heiderlberg. Partner contact is Prof Norbert Gretz (Norbert.Gretz@medma.uni-heidelberg.de)


13. ER1: Development of polyacrylate biomimetic materials for directed differentiation of established kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs) from adult human kidney
A 2-3 year position: Experienced Researcher (2 years) or Early Stage Researcher (3 years) in biomaterials science
The researcher is hosted by Biomer Technology Ltd (Partner 5) and will undertake secondments at the University of Liverpool (Partner 1) and the Mawson Institute of South Australia (Partner 12). The main aim of this project is to model novel biomimetic polyacrylates on the extra-cellular matrix composition of decullarised kidneys. If an ESR is appointed, s/he is registereded for PhD studies at the University of Liverpool. Partner contact is Dr Simon Dixon (simon.dixon@biomertechnology.co.uk)


14. ER2: Development of macroporous materials for directed differentiation of established kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs) from adult human kidney
A 12-18 month position (now completed): Experienced Researcher (12 months) or Early Stage Researcher (18 months)) in biomaterials science
The researcher is hosted by Spheritech Ltd (Partner 10) and will undertake secondments at the University of Liverpool (Partner 1). The main aim of this project is to fabricate materials with defined pore sizes and topography, functionalised with extracellular matrix components or mimetics, for KSPC differentiation. Partner contact is Dr Don Wellings (don.wellings@spheritech.com)


15. ER3: Investigating the ability of kidney stem/progenitor cells (KSPCs) to promote recovery from experimentally-induced renal disease in rodents
A 2-3 year position: Experienced Researcher (2 years) or Early Stage Researcher (3 years) in in renal biology/regenerative medicine
The researcher is hosted by the University of Heidelberg (Partner 8) and will undertake secondments at Fresenius Kabi (Partner 13). The aims of this project are to (i) investigate the gene expression profile of KSPC lines established by Partners 1,2,4 and 9 using microarray-based transcriptome analysis; (ii) develop a near infrared dye-labelled Sinistrin molecule (in collaboration with Partner 13) to improve the sensitivity of measuring the glomerular filtration rate in rodents using a novel electronic device ( see Schock-Kusch D et al. Kidney Int (2011)); (iii) investigate if KSPCs can delay or prevent the progression of renal disease in rodent models of induced renal injury. An early stage researchers would be expected to registered for PhD studies at the University of Heiderlberg. Partner contact is Prof Norbert Gretz (Norbert.Gretz@medma.uni-heidelberg.de)