PhD Scholarship PBDL/BDE/18

Call for Applications for a PhD Scholarship in business at Hovione, Reference: PBDL/BDE/18

Hovione FarmaCiencia SA (Hovione) is a Portuguese company specialized in Health sciences, dedicated to the research, development and production of Active Pharmaceutical Substances (APIs), and drug products for pulmonary inhalation and oral delivery. Hovione innovates and leads worldwide in the field of pharmaceutical chemistry, as demonstrated by about 400 worldwide patents. The products and procedures developed at Hovione meet the high standards of compliance established by the International Conference Harmonization (ICH), Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Health Authorities of European countries and Japan.

As an integral part of Hovione's Innovation Strategy, the PhD program Processability, bioavailability and drug load: Opening the door to alternative excipients was created and awarded a PhD in Business (BDE) scholarship.

Thus, under the terms of the” Estatuto do Bolseiro de Investigação Ciêntifica”, approved by “Lei nº 40/2004” amended by “Decreto-Lei nº 202/2012”, of 27th August, and amended by “Decreto-Lei nº. 233/2012, of 29th October and by “lei nº12/2013, of 29th January and “Decreto-Lei nº. 89/2013”, of 9th July (Research Grants Regulation of the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT)), now in force a call for the selection of scholars and grant of an individual scholarship is open:

SCHOLARSHIP
The present call is open to a PhD in Business (BDE) Scholarship under the conditions and characteristics set forth in Article 6 of the FCT Research Grant Regulation in force in 2022.

SCIENTIFIC AREA
Chemical engineering, material engineering pharmaceutical sciences or chemistry.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Master’s in chemical/Pharmaceutical/Materials Engineering, Chemistry or Pharmaceutical Sciences with a minimum grade of 16 may apply for this call.

Preference will be given to candidates with proven experience in areas related to the detailed work plan below and fluent in English. Personal characteristics: Enthusiasm, organization and objectivity; Analytical sense (attention to detail); Sense of responsibility and ethics; Ability to analyze and solve problems; Good interpersonal skills

WORK PLAN
This work aims to broaden the portfolio of excipients to be used in the development of solid amorphous dispersions (ASDs) in order to increase their oral bioavailability, improve their processability into oral dosage forms, and increase the process sustainability. In detail, a detailed study will be made of biodegradable excipients that allow to increase the solubility and maintain the physical and chemical stability of amorphous drugs (DCS class II/IV) with a special focus on their dissolution and absorption profile. This work will include the production of prototypes of amorphous dispersions by spray-drying, as well as the production of tablets with the most promising amorphous dispersions.

ASDs and final formulations will be characterized taking into account their physicochemical properties, biorelevant dissolution performance, permeation, pharmacokinetics, and flow.

The activity of the scholar should focus on the following tasks:

  • Literature review and definition of bench work; Fundamental characterization of alternative excipients
  • Formulation of poorly soluble APIs with new excipients benchmarking with current formulation strategies (e.g. ASD with soluble polymers).
  • Physical and performance characterization of the different formulations and benchmark against commonly used excipients
  • Scale up the most promising formulations and characterize them in terms of stability and manufacturability
  • In vivo bioavailability studies
  • Thesis writing

WORKPLACE
The implementation of the program will take place at Hovione's premises, in close collaboration with Instituto Superior Técnico.

SUPERVISION
The scientific supervisors of the program will be Vanda Vaz Serra (Institute Supervisor) and Silvia M.B. Costa (Institute Co-supervisor) and Maria Paisana (Hovione Supervisor) and Inês Ramos (Hovione Co-Supervisor).

DURATION
The scholarship has a maximum duration of 4 years; it is granted on a full-time basis and is awarded annually, for periods of 12 consecutive months and automatically renewable, unless under the applicable legislation the scholar fails to fulfill his / her assigned duties. The scholarship is scheduled to start in September 2022 on an exclusive basis.

RECIPIENTS
This call is addressed to anyone who is eligible to participate in the Program.

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION OF APPLICATIONS
The call is open between 23/May/2022 and 7/June/2022.

APPLICATIONS
Applications must be completed through a motivation letter to phds@hovione.com, mentioning the Program and this announcement, together with the following documents: Letter of Motivation, detailed Curriculum Vitae of the applicant [proving the above mentioned requirements] copy of relevant diploma, a valid email address and a contact telephone number, contact details of 2 persons as referrals and other documents which the applicant considers relevant for the evaluation of his / her application.

Only applications received until 17:00 until June 7th, 2022 will be considered.

EVALUATION

The selection methods are as follows:

  1. Preliminary evaluation of CVs by Human Resources and supervisor
  2. Psychotechnical tests (eliminatory factor) - candidates with negative results will not be considered for points ii, iii, iv and v;
  3. Scientific merit taking into account the curriculum vitae of the candidate, degree / masters grade (minimum 16/20), participation in research projects, suitability of the candidate's profile to the Program theme and candidate experience in the Program theme;
  4. Level of English;
  5. Motivation Letter
  6. Interview

Each item will be scored on a scale of 0-20, with the following weights: Curriculum vitae and experience (40%), English (10%), motivation letter (10%) and interview (40%).

The evaluation of the applications will be carried out by the Evaluation Panel defined in accordance with Article 11 of the FCT Research Grants Regulation.

EVALUATION PANEL
The evaluation panel comprises the Hovione's Scientific Advisors panel, Project Manager Innovation and Hovione Human Resources.

PUBLICATION OF RESULTS
The results of the evaluation, presented in descending order, are published through the Hovione website and sent to the applicants within the deadline set in Article 12 of the FCT Research Grants Regulation.

FINANCING
The scholarship has a value of € 1.144.64, which is in accordance with the table of values for scholarships awarded directly by FCT, I.P. and is 100% funded by Hovione. The scholarship payment will be made monthly. The tuition fees of the Academic Institution will also be paid entirely by Hovione.

REQUESTS FOR INFORMATION
Only requests made by e-mail to phds@hovione.com will be considered.