IRSN, Institut de radioprotection et de sûreté nucléaire

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Post-doctorate proposal

Prospective chohorte study on early cardiovascular changes following radiation therapy for breast cancer

Start in : September 2020

Duration : 18 month

Workplace : Toulouse, France


The Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN) is a French public establishment of an industrial and commercial nature (EPIC), a French expert in research and expertise in the fields of nuclear safety, control and protection of nuclear materials and protection against ionising radiation.

Within IRSN, the research conducted by the Epidemiology Laboratory aims to improve knowledge of the health effects of ionising radiation on humans, particularly in the context of occupational, medical or environmental exposure, through the epidemiological monitoring of cohorts and statistical analyses. This research contributes to IRSN's assessment mission in terms of human radiation protection.
In the field of exposure in medical environments, this research is carried out in collaboration with health establishments (hospitals, clinics, Cancer Centres, etc.).

Position and missions

In the frame of the European MEDIRAD project, The EARLY-HEART prospective cohort  study was launched in order to investigate early cardiovacular changes after breast cancer radiation therapy.

The EARLY-HEART study is a multicentre prospective cohort study that included 250 female breast cancer patients treated with post-operative radiotherapy alone after primary breast conserving surgery in one of the 5 investigating centres from France (IRSN-Clinique Pasteur Toulouse), Netherlands (UMCG Groningen), Germany (TUM MED Munich), Spain (ICO Girona) and Portugal (CCUL Lisbon) and followed for 2 years after radiotherapy with 3 time points  (before RT, RT+6 months and RT+24 months). Inclusion period lasted from August 2017 to October 2019.

The objectives are to identify and validate the most important cardiac imaging biomarkers (based on echocardiography, computed tomography coronary angiography, cardiac magnetic resonance imaging) and circulating plasma biomarkers of radiation-induced cardiovascular changes arising in the first 2 years after breast cancer radiotherapy and to develop risk/prediction models integrating these biomarkers combined with dose metrics of cardiac structures based on 3D dosimetry.


Applicants should have a PhD in Epidemiology or Biostatistics and good programming skills in SAS, Stata and/or R. Having a previous experience in the field of toxicity / complications after radiation therapy would be an asset.

The selected candidate will work in close collaboration with the coordinator of the project (French IRSN epidemiologist) and scientists with expertise in clinical epidemiology, cardiac imaging and radiation oncology.  The candidate should be able to work independently while efficiently interacting and collaborating in an interdiciplinary team, and should be able to communicate in English and French.

The position includes leading statistical analysis for EALY HEART study and manuscript writing in collaboration with the research team. The selected candidate will be encouraged to present the findings of the project at scientific conferences.

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