Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action Doctoral Network - FLImagin3D



The HORIZON-TMA-MSCA Doctoral Network for a Shared Excellence of Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy in Biomedical Applications (FLImagin3D) is an EU-based doctorate training program aiming at achieving excellence in advanced FLIM microscopy, biosensors, mathematical modelling, and analysis of 3D tissue models.

This will support training of 12 PhD students by bringing together 6 EU-based universities (Trinity College Dublin, Politecnico di Milano, Eberhard Karls University of Tubingen, Ghent University, Netherlands Cancer Institute and University of Copenhagen, 6 partners from the industry (MOAB Srl, NMI, Leica Microsystems, Lambert Instruments, PicoQuant) and King’s College London (UK).

The project will be coordinated by Prof. M. Monaghan (Trinity College Dublin) and will run from 1-Jan-2023 till 31-Dec-2026.

Project description

In flIMAGIN3D, which centres on fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM) applied to biomedical platforms in 3D, 12 talented Doctoral Candidates (DCs) will be recruited, trained and supervised to cohesively establish the most robust, user accessible and powerful FLIM-based platform-never achieved before, and apply it to a wide range of applications in the biological sciences. flIMAGIN3D will generate 12 DCs at the cutting edge of FLIM-based biological imaging who will spearhead, and go onto catalyse clusters of FLIM excellence across Europe; each intertwined within a collaborative network that will extend beyond the time-frame of the program. This doctoral network will train talented doctoral candidates in the essential theories underpinning FLIM, through the individual projects and extensive secondments in this network; elevate their projects and skills, and that of their secondment hosts to research excellence in FLIM.
flIMAGIN3D addresses a significant knowledge gap in the field of photonics in biology by involving biomedical scientists in every aspect of development and design, and cognisant of the wide variety of current platforms that require adaptability to such modalities. In flIMAGIN3D: bringing together representatives with different applications and backgrounds, we will identify and overcome barriers to FLIM microscopy by developing the next generation of scientists who will develop a FLIM platform capable of extracting the greatest amount of information possible in a stream-lined, accurate and user-friendly manner to understand biology in disease, differentiation, mechanobiology, development and interventions at a high resolution. To achieve this goal, the trained scientists will develop more affordable advanced hardware components, with user-friendly software that will enable building precise libraries for accurate machine learning classifications and plug-and-play platforms and sensors to facilitate a wide range of dynamic 3D imaging applications.


These are the research objectives of FLIMagin3D:

  1. To create, characterise, standardise and test cost-effective platforms adaptability to all of the various user communities, and to enhance existing imaging capabilities
  2. Optimise the data acquisition and user-data interface whereby large amounts of data are quickly and correctly acquired, processed and interpreted under control of intelligent software
  3. Establish a library of tools to act as biosensors, perturbers (‘actuators’) and microenvironments to assess biological activities and processes, and interrogate such activity non-invasively and reproducibly.

Role of Ghent University

Ghent University will host and lead 3 PhD research projects dedicated to:

  • FLIM-assisted analysis of intestinal organoids metabolism
  • Sensing and manipulating hypoxia with innovative biosensing and tissue engineering tools
  • Rapid development of FRET biosensors optimized for FLIM readouts of mechanobiological sensing and cellular response in imaging cancer (in collaboration with NKI)

In addition, Ghent University will support and host PhD students from other research projects within the network, including partners from Trinity College Dublin, NKI, University of Copenhagen, Politecnico di Milano, University of Tubingen and industry collaborators.




Prof. Ruslan I. Dmitriev
Department of Human Structure and Repair (GE38)
Phone number: +32 9 332 51 33

Funding info

vlag plat funded by the eu.JPG

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Research Executive Agency (REA). Neither the European Union nor the authority can be held responsible for them.