Ludovic Le Saux started his PhD in May 2021 in the CRCINA team 13. Aim: to develop bio-orthogonal click chemistry for the production of innovative radiopharmaceuticals for nuclear imaging and internal vectorized radiotherapy.

After a university education in Nantes in chemistry and biology, Ludovic Le Saux worked for a year and a half as an assistant engineer in team 13 at the CRCINA. At the end of his contract, he decided to start a thesis “to open up to other scientific horizons”.

His work over the next three years, funded by GIP ARRONAX and co-supervised by Jean-François Gestin (CRCINA) and Romain Eychenne (GIP ARRONAX), will aim to develop bio-orthogonal approaches for the assembly of radionuclide + vector for the production of radiopharmaceuticals required for clinical studies. While classical bioconjugation chemistry, which exploits the natural chemical functions of vectors, requires adapting the conditions to each type of vector + radionuclide pair, click chemistry is more versatile and easily transposable to many different situations. Ludovic will therefore work on developing radiolabelled molecules and clickable vectors, which will eventually allow the creation of a library of interchangeable precursors depending on the required application.

Ludovic will use vectors such as antibodies, nanobodies and peptides, as well as radionuclides produced by the Arronax cyclotron, such as astatine-211, but also fluorine-18, which is available through a collaboration with the Laboratory for radiopharmaceutical research directed by Pr Guy Bormans in Belgium. The PhD student will go to Belgium this summer for a 6-week stay financed by a mobility grant awarded by the IRC TransForMed.

This work is part of the SIRIC ILIAD and in particular of the project coordinated by François Guérard (CRCINA) which consists in the development of bio-orthogonal chemistry for nuclear medicine.

Contact : Ludovic Le Saux