PhD fellowship in Comparative Pediatrics

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 14 Mar 2021

Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences

Animal Models in Pediatrics

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen

We are offering a PhD fellowship in Comparative Pediatrics commencing 1 June 2021 or as soon as possible hereafter.

Our group and research
We offer a highly international, diverse and interdisciplinary environment in the Section of Comparative Pediatrics and Nutrition. We perform research and teaching related to development, nutrition and disease in both farm animals and human infants. Our work extends from basic in vitro studies on cells and tissues (mechanisms and –omics technologies), over animal model studies (mainly in piglets), to intervention and cohort studies of infants at hospitals (growth, gut, brain, immunity, microbiota). The wide range of methodologies requires interdisciplinary collaboration and teamwork among group members with widely different academic backgrounds (from basic biology to veterinary/human medicine).

Project description

We aim to improve early life clinical condition and organ development of newborn infants and piglets. The project focuses on how microbial factors and dietary components can influence the development of gut, immunity and brain after birth. Two different research angles can be pursued for the PhD project. Using a preterm neonatal piglet model, one project focuses on microbiology and aims to investigate how transplantation of microbes from healthy donors to newborn recipients can protect from gut disease. The other project focus on milk interventions and aims to investigate how important dietary milk components influence on shaping of the gut microbiome and direct effects on immunity and brain function in the newborn.

Principal supervisors are Professor Thomas Thymann (microbial PhD project), Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, E-mail: , Direct phone: +4535332622.

Start:                1 June 2021

Duration:         3 years as a PhD student

Job description
Your key tasks as a PhD student at SUND are:

  • Carry through an independent research project under supervision
  • Complete PhD courses or other equivalent education corresponding to approx. 30 ECTS points
  • Participate in active research environments including a stay at another research team
  • Obtain experience with teaching or other types of dissemination related to your PhD project
  • Teach and disseminate your knowledge
  • Write a PhD thesis on the grounds of your project 

Key criteria for the assessment of applicants
Applicants must have qualifications corresponding to a Master’s degree related to the subject area of the project e.g. veterinary medicine, human biology, food science.

Other important criteria are:

  • The grade point average achieved
  • Professional qualifications relevant to the PhD project as described above
  • Previous publications
  • Relevant work experience
  • Other professional activities
  • Curious mind-set with a strong interest in neonatal health and development
  • Language skills

Place of employment

The place of employment is at Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen. We offer creative and stimulating working conditions in dynamic and international research environment. Our research facilities include modern laboratories and animal facilities and a close connection to national and international hospitals.

Terms of employment
The employment as PhD fellow is full time and for 3 years.

It is conditioned upon the applicant’s success­ful enrolment as a PhD student at the Graduate School at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen. This requires submission and acceptance of an application for the specific project formulated by the applicant.

The PhD study must be completed in accordance with The Ministerial Order on the PhD programme (2013) and the Faculty’s rules on achieving the degree. Salary, pension and terms of employment are in accordance with the agree­ment between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State. Depending on seniority, the monthly salary begins around 27.568 DKK /approx. 3.707 EUR (February 2021-level) plus pension.

For specific information about the PhD fellowship, please contact the principal supervisor.

General information about PhD study at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences is available at the Graduate School’s website:

Application procedure
Your application must be submitted electronically by clicking ‘Apply now’ below. The application must include the following documents in PDF format: 

1. Motivated letter of application (max. one page). Please specify in the application which of the two projects you apply for and motivation for that project.

2. CV incl. education, experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position

3. Master of Science diploma and transcript of records. If not completed, a certified/signed copy of a recent transcript of records or a written statement from the institution or supervisor will do

4. Publication list (if possible)

Application deadline: 14 March 2021, 23.59pm CET

We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.

The further process
After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the hiring committee. All applicants are then immediately notified whether their application has been passed for assessment by an unbiased assessor.

The assessor makes a non-prioritized assessment of the academic qualifications and experience with respect to the above-mentioned area of research, techniques, skills and other requirements listed in the advertisement.

Once the assessment work has been completed each applicant has the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that relates to the applicant him/herself.

You can read about the recruitment process at

The applicant will be assessed according to the Ministerial Order of 2020 on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Universities.

Interviews are expected to be held in weeks 15 and 16.

The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences comprises approximately 7500 students, 1500 PhD students and 3200 employees. The Faculty advances the field of health sciences through its core activities: research, teaching, knowledge sharing and communication. With basic research fields ranging from molecular studies to studies of society, the Faculty contributes to a healthy future through its graduates, research findings and inventions benefitting patients and the community. The University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding community and invites all regardless of personal background to apply for the position. 

Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.

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