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Francois Gaascht

Francois Gaascht

PhD

Disciplines: Biology Chemistry
Research topics:
Cancer Natural Products Drug Discovery
St Paul, United States , Minnesota

Summary

My research interest is focused on the discovery, the elucidation of the mode of action of natural and natural-based products as well as their promotion as high added-value bioactive compounds, mainly as therapeutic and anticancer agents. I obtained my BSc and MSc at the University of Strasbourg (Strasbourg, France) and completed my PhD at the Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire du Cancer (Luxembourg, Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg) in the framework of the European RedCat Project. As Marie Curie Fellow, my research project focused on the discovery and the elucidation of the mode of action of several natural and natural-based products as anticancer drugs. After acquisition of new skills in natural products isolation and structure elucidation at the Fundacíon MEDINA (Granada, Spain), I joined the Schmidt-Dannert lab at the BioTechnology Institute (University of Minnesota, USA) in October 2016 as Postdoctoral Research Associate to implement and develop a new project aiming to screen and isolate new antifungal compounds from Basidiomycota.

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Experience

Postdoctoral associate researcher Since October 2016

Biotechnology Institute (St Paul US)

Screening and isolation of high-added value compounds from Basidiomycota

Chemist in natural products October 2014 - January 2015

Fundacion MEDINA (Granada ES)

- Subject: Apprenticeship within the objectives to acquire solid good basis and new skills in bioactive natural products isolation and identification from microorganisms. - Main tasks: Preparation of extracts from microbial cultures (bacteria and fungi), fractionation of extracts and isolation of natural products by liquid chromatography techniques (CombiFlash, (semi-) preparative HPLC). -Secondary tasks: Structure elucidation of small molecules and natural products from (high-resolution) – MS, 1D and 2D NMR data (H, C, HSQC, HMBC, COSY).

PhD student September 2009 - December 2013

Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire du Cancer (LBMCC) (Luxembourg LU)

Subject: Discovery, identification and characterization of molecules from natural origins capable of targeting transduction, proliferation, inflammation and cell death pathways in various cancer cell models. Analysis of anticancer cytotoxic potential of various natural substances obtained after extract fractionating of a carnivorous plant (Dionaea muscipula). Study of anticancer activities (cytotoxicity, anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, proteasome inhibition, pro-oxidant action) of several natural and natural–based compounds.

MSc student July 2008 - June 2009

Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire du Cancer (LBMCC) (Luxembourg LU)

Subject: Effect of curcumin on the Wingless (Wnt) pathway in prostate cancer. Main tasks: Analysis of the effect of the natural compound curcumin on androgen–dependent and independent prostate cancer cell models mainly focused on the Wnt pathway.

Education

PhD September 2009 - December 2013

Université de Lorraine (Metz FR)

Subject: Discovery, identification and characterization of natural origins molecules capable of targeting transduction, proliferation inflammation pathways and cell death in cancer cells. Main tasks: Analysis of anticancer cytotoxic potential of various natural substances obtained after fractionation of carnivorous plant (Dionaea muscipula) extracts. Secondary tasks: Study of anti-cancer activities (cytotoxicity, anti-proliferative, NF-κB pathway inhibition, identification of cell death mechanism, proteasome inhibition, pro-oxidant action) of several natural (flavonoids, fungal compounds,…) and natural–based compounds (flavonoid, coumarin, curcumin derivatives).

Awards

Grant February 2015

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Alumni Association - Micro Travel Grant

Europaeus Doctorate December 2013

Europaeus Doctorate label attached to my PhD Degree

Grant November 2013

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Alumni Association - Micro Travel Grant

Grant September 2009

Grant Marie Curie Action, RedCat Training Network, Initial Training Network (ITN) (Project 215009), European Commission – 7th Framework Programme.

Grant October 2008

Lions Club Luxembourg – Action “Vaincre le Cancer”

Interests

Carnivorous Plants

Contact me

ORCID® 0000-0001-6129-0708