ESR15 – Guilherme Antunes Gouveia

Guilherme Antunes Gouveia

Host: Radboudumc
Supervisors: Dr. Marien De Jonge (Radboudumc), Leo Joosten (Radboudumc)

ESR 15: Cell-based in-vitro assays for biosensor testing and validation

“Being involved in a potential game changing project is rewarding by itself, the people are the cherry on top.

We will develop in vitro cell-based assays to monitor the dynamics of rapid inflammatory responses. The assays will be used to study the biology of inflammatory response dynamics and to test the sensing technologies developed within the consortium.

We will use human cell models with increasing complexity, from cell lines to primary cells and whole blood, to mimic the concentration changes of inflammatory molecules (including cytokines) that would happen in the body fluids of a human. After studying and characterizing the kinetics and dynamics of inflammation in these models we will test and validate the technologies developed within the consortium.

I don’t remember a time where I did not find the world interesting, from the colour of flowers in the park to the way I could curve a football and score a stunner to impress my friends at school. Personally, I got interested in Biology in high school due to wonderful teachers. That made me choose Biology for my Bachelors. The following years, while deepening my knowledge in Molecular Biology, Physics and Biochemistry I could look at the same problem but with the lenses of a Biologist or a Physicist at the same time and I liked it. Despite being recommended to me to specialize in a specific research field, I wanted to keep my horizons open to different fields and challenges. The Masters programme that I chose and really enjoyed taught me subjects that included theoretical physics at the micro and nanoscale, material science, cell and tissue engineering and electric circuits. All necessary to work at the interface of all these subjects and relevant for the Biosensor theme. Without sufficient background in different areas, it would be hard to foresee and understand the challenges that we will face and how to attempt to solve them. That is why I chose this field of research. While sharing ideas with my colleagues, that also come from different backgrounds, we will certainly come up with creative solutions. This opens opportunities to learn different skills while working together with talented scientists on an interesting topic. All of this makes me happy to work within CONSENSE. 

From 2015 to 2018 I did my bachelor’s in biology with specialization in Molecular Biology and Genetics and an integrated minor in Physics in the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon. After, from 2018 to 2020 I frequented a Masters in Bioengineering and Nanosystems in Instituto Superior Técnico, also in Lisbon. For my Master Thesis, from January 2020 to August 2020 I stayed in the BNT group in the University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands. Here I worked on Encapsulins and how to modify them to use them as vaccines.