Ph.D. position in Immunology/Cancer Immunotherapy (Beltra lab)

Updated: about 2 months ago

The Department of Biomedicine is a joint effort between the University of Basel and the University Hospitals Basel. It unites basic and clinical scientists to advance our understanding of health and disease and to develop pioneering therapies benefiting the lives of patients in areas of unmet need. With more than 70 research groups and 900 employees, the Department of Biomedicine is the largest department at the University. We are located in the heart of Basel across 6 different locations. Be part of our future!
The research group led by Dr. Prof. Beltra is currently seeking a highly motivated Ph.D. student with a strong interest in conducting high level research in the fields of T-cell immunobiology and cancer immunotherapy. This position will be based in the Department of Biomedicine ( in Basel, Switzerland - one of the world's leading locations for life sciences, home to several companies and institutions.
Prof. Beltra's group is studying the factors governing T-cell differentiation programs in settings of viral infections and cancers. Notably, we are particularly interested in identifying new pathways regulating the process of CD8 T cell exhaustion, an hypofunctional program acquired by CD8 T cells exposed to persistent inflammation and antigenic stimulation. Indeed, CD8 T cell exhaustion represents a central limitation to current anti-cancer immunotherapies and strategies aiming at reversing this process are still lacking. By exploring the intimate mechanisms regulating CD8 T cell exhaustion, our group aims to identify innovative opportunities to reverse this process and unleash the full potential of current cancer immunotherapies (e.g. PD-1-based therapy). To this end, we have developed relevant murine models for the study of CD8 T cell-exhaustion and are leveraging cutting-edge technologies (single cell omics, ATACseq) and innovative immunological and genetic perturbation tools (Retroviruses, CRISPR), to identify and characterize new pathways of interest for a better therapeutic manipulation of exhausted CD8 T cells. Collectively, our group aims to lay the foundation for advancing next-generation cancer immunotherapies.   

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