Scientific direction Development of key enabling technologies
Transfer of knowledge to industry

PhD : selection by topics

Engineering science >> Physical chemistry and electrochemistry
2 proposition(s).

Development of an analytical tool for ovulation detection dedicated to the improvment of the reproduction process in cattle breeding

Département Microtechnologies pour la Biologie et la Santé (LETI)

Laboratoire Chimie des Matériaux et des Interfaces



This thesis is embedded within a larger aim collaborative project, SmartRepro (CEA-INRA) aiming at developing an automatic estrus detection tool that clearly differs from existing methods. The idea here is to get closer to the reference method of ovulation detection used in experimentation, namely the dosage of reproductive hormones. The originality of the project is to develop an on-board device containing a biological fluid sampling system capable of realizing these assays in real time and generating an alert to the farmer a few hours before the occurrence of ovulation. The aim of the thesis focuses on the development of the subcutaneous sampling tool residing in a network of hollow microneedles connected to a microfluidic device activated by a fluid pump. The implantation of the network is considered for the duration of an ovarian cycle and therefore should remain effective over a period close to 1 month. For this, solutions to avoid all inflammatory phenomena, likely to lead to the encapsulation of microneedles, and biofouling will be developed in order to conduct animal testing. As a preamble to this technical development, the PhD student will participate in experiments with INRA partner to determine the area of application of the sensor. This thesis aims to prove the concept of microneedles for the collection of interstitial fluids on an ovarian cycle over a five stage development from microneedle design to animal testing. We are searching for a PD student having an engineering formation in physics and a good background in microfluidics. A complementary formation in biomedical engineering will be greatly appreciated. The candidate have to be capable to work in a multidisciplinary fields (microfluidic, medical devices, animal experimentation, biomaterials)

3D porous materials for the design of sequential fluidic bioreactors

Département Nord Pas De Calais



3D porous materials are currently used for their intrinsic structural properties that offers exceptional surface/volume ratio. This property allows rapid exchanges between a processed fluid and the macroporous surface. Moreover, the use of deformable (compression, stretching?) macroporous materials enables easy management of filling and the extraction of fluids through reduction or increase of the internal volume under mechanical stress. These deformable macroporous 3D structures represent a new class of materials of high interest for the design of electrochemical bioreactors. Indeed, the intrinsic open-porosity could be used for the confinement of biological species (enzymes or cells), transforming each pore into single microreactor. Moreover, this 3D macroporous structure could benefit from further implementation of electronic conductivity to the structural material to generate volume 3D electrodes. This thesis deals first with the development of conducting, biocompatible and deformable 3D macroporous-materials in the perspective of enzymatic or cell bioreactor design. These materials will bring original insights on in situ monitoring of cell cultures or on the design of highly sensitive biosensors. Thereby, in a second step the thesis will consist on the functionalization of the macroporous structures and on the design of the bioreactors. The applicant should presents a strong background on materials sciences (and especially macropourous deformable materials) and electrochemistry. Some knowledges on biology/biochemistry and microfluidic would be positive.

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