Resolving cellular heterogeneity and cooperation in human health and disease using highly multiplexed spatial (multi-)omics technologies
The current PhD project is placed in the context of a KU Leuven interdisciplinary network (IDN) project, focused on the development and application of a spatial single-cell multi-omics platform to study cellular heterogeneity and cell-cell cooperation in human tissues and organs in health and disease. The project will focus on developing, implementing and running complex molecular biology methods for in situ profiling of RNA molecules in single cells, later in conjunction with DNA and/or protein molecules of the same single cells. These techniques will be based on sequential fluorescence in situ hybridization (seqFISH) or in situ sequencing (ISS) approaches. The aim is to establish and apply these techniques for studying cancer and neurobiological processes, in which cellular heterogeneity, cell-cell communication and interactions, the biology of cellular niches, and cellular architecture play an important role.