PhD : Antibacterial hydrogels based on marine exopolysaccharides encapsulating living lactic acid bacteria (M/F)

Reference: PV-2024-1412/1


Duration in months :36

Start date:

Deadline for applications:15/04/2024



General areas of responsibility

EM3B laboratory (fr. Ecosystèmes Microbiens et Molécules Marines pour les Biotechnologies) efficiently contributes to the science through fundamental research on marine bacteria from particular environments (food matrices, deep-sea hydrothermal vents) and their valuable metabolites, in particular antimicrobial peptides and exopolysaccharides. This fundamental knowledge opens the way toward innovative developments already explored in food (biopreservation) and medicine (tissue engineering, cancer treatment).


Lactic acid bacteria (LABs) are non-pathogenic bacteria recognized as biocontrol agents through the production of biologically active compounds such as antimicrobial peptides (bacteriocins). LABs are also commonly used as probiotics for humans and animals for various beneficial effects (stimulation of the immune system, competition against pathogenic bacteria). To ensure optimal performance of these beneficial bacteria, their encapsulation in an appropriate microenvironment ensuring both their viability and their secreting activities constitutes a challenge.


In this context, the objective of the thesis is to develop a hydrogel scaffold based on exopolysaccharides produced by deep-sea hydrothermal vent bacteria from Ifremer collection, encapsulating living LABs selected for their beneficial effects in biopreservation and wound healing. Incorporation of bacteria inside the highly hydrated three-dimensional matrix will provide to them a protective environment suitable for their survival and the production of antibacterial molecules. In the frame of the thesis, a proof of concept using the developed antibacterial hydrogel scaffold encapsulating living LABS on in vitro wound healing model will be performed.

Key words

Hydrogel, bacteria, mechanical property, antibacterial activity, biopreservation, wound healing.




Required Knowledge, skills, and characteristics


  • Master 2 in physico-chemistry of biopolymers.
  • Skills in analytical chemistry, techniques for biomaterial characterization and microbiology.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in English





Specific working conditions


  • 3-month stay during the third year of the thesis is planned in the Department of Biomaterials and Composites of AGH University of Krakόw (Poland).


  • Phd is a real opportunity to work on Ifremer's scientific and technological priority themes. It entitles the holder to a gross monthly salary of 2300 euros for a period of 3 years, which cannot be combined with other scholarships. 


How to apply for this position


Your application file must include:

  • a curriculum vitae 
  • a covering letter
  • a reference letter
  • an academic transcript (Bachelor + Master 1 and first semester Master 2)


Your application must be compiled into 2 PDF files, up to 3 MB for each file.



The deadline for applications is April 15th, 2024. Nevertheless, we strongly urge you to let us know as soon as possible of your intention to apply, by contacting the subject supervisor:


In paralell, please submit your application to the doctoral school: VAAME.


Doctoral students' contracts will start as of October 1st, 2024, subject to the submission of administrative documents authorizing Ifremer to recruit the doctoral student (certificate of completion of the Master 2 or engineering degree + visa for foreign doctoral students outside the EU).




The Institute and the recruiting departement 

A pioneer in ocean science, IFREMER’s cutting-edge research is grounded in sustainable development and open science. Our vision is to advance science, expertise and innovation to:

- Protect and restore the ocean

- Sustainably use marine resources to benefit society

- Create and share ocean data, information & knowledge.

With more than 1,500 personnel spread along the French coastline in more than 20 sites, the Institute explores the 3 great oceans: the Indian, Atlantic and Pacific oceans. A leader in ocean science, IFREMER is managing the French Oceanographic Fleet and its dedicated scientists create ground-breaking technology to push the boundaries of ocean exploration and knowledge, from the abyss to the atmosphere-ocean interface.

Well-established in the international scientific community, our scientists, engineers and technicians are committed to advance knowledge about our planet’s last unexplored frontiers. They provide the science we need for informed decision-making and public policy and they transfer this knowledge and technology to businesses to fulfill public and private needs. Core to our mission is also to strengthen public awareness about the importance of understanding the ocean and its resources, and empowering future generations of leaders through education and outreach national campaigns.

Founded in 1984, IFREMER is a French public organization and its budget approximates 240 million euros. It is operating under the joint authority of the French Ministry for Higher Education, Research and Innovation, the french Ministry of the Sea, the French Ministry for the Ecological and Solidary Transition, and the French Ministry of Agriculture and Food.


How to apply for this position

Deadline for applications: 15/04/2024

All applications are processed exclusively via our website. Interested candidates can apply by clicking the Apply button. 

Ifremer - French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea

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Location: France, Nantes
Categories: Biotechnology, Laboratory analysis, Laboratory Assistant, PhD, Physical Chemistry ,


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