PhD Fellowship to Study Transcriptional Plasticity of the Endocrine Pancreas

Updated: about 1 month ago

A three-year PhD fellowship is available from 1 February 2020 or soon thereafter in the Mandrup Group at the Functional Genomics & Metabolism Research Unit, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Southern Denmark. Application deadline: 20 December 2019.

Research Project and Role
As a PhD student on this project you will be part of an international and very dynamic research group focusing on uncovering the transcriptional mechanisms by which the endocrine pancreas adopts to metabolic challenges. Your project will investigate the transcriptional mechanisms underlying the adaptive and pathophysiological changes in pancreatic β-cells during development of high fat diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance. You will employ advanced mouse models with cell type specific labelling of β-cells combined with deep sequencing-based technologies including single cell sequencing to assess changes in the transcriptome and epigenome at population and single-cell resolution.

In addition, we collaborate with the clinic to investigate the relevance of the findings in human islets. Discoveries in this PhD project will give important insight into the transcriptional mechanisms and transcriptional regulators that drive β-cell adaptation, some of which may constitute therapeutic targets for prevention and treatment of diabetes. 

The Functional Genomics & Metabolism Research Unit
The Mandrup Group is part of the Functional Genomics & Metabolism Research Unit , at Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, SDU. The research unit currently hosts seven independent research groups focusing on various aspects of functional genomics as it pertains to the regulation of cellular differentiation and metabolism. The Research Unit constitutes an international, ambitious, highly dynamic, and well-equipped working environment. The unit and the department have state-of-the-art facilities for next generation sequencing, single-cell transcriptomics, flow cytometry, mass spectrometry, metabolomics, bioimaging and transgenic mouse work. Strategic research alliances exist with Odense University Hospital (OUH). The research unit also hosts two major research centres Center for Functional Genomics and Tissue Plasticity (ATLAS) and Center for Adipocyte Signaling (ADIPOSIGN) , both directed by Susanne Mandrup.

We are looking for highly motivated, dedicated and ambitious candidates with:
• A Master’s degree in Life Science, preferably Molecular Biology, Biomedicine, or Computational Systems Biology
• Documented experience with adipocyte biology, mouse models and/or NGS data analysis
• Certificate in Laboratory Animal Science (EU function ABD or similar) (preferably)
• Strong communication and collaborative skills and an interest in working in an interdisciplinary environment
• Proficiency in spoken and written English.

We offer:
• An attractive, collegial and international working environment
• A three- or four-year PhD position in a stimulating and supportive, international research environment
• Access to state-of-the-art equipment, facilities and infrastructure
• Opportunity to interact with an extensive network of national and international collaborators
• A competitive salary and social benefits (e.g. health coverage, parental leave, social security etc.)
• Dedicated assistance and support with various practical, social, and legal aspects (housing, visa, administration, tax etc.), especially for international candidates through our international staff office (ISO) and department.

For further information please contact Professor Susanne Mandrup ( 

Application, salary etc.
Appointment as a PhD Research Fellow is for three (students who have completed their MSc) or four years (students who have not yet completed their MSc). Employment stops automatically at the end of the period. The holder of the scholarship is not allowed to have other paid employment during the three-year period.

The successful applicant will be employed in accordance with the agreement on salaried PhD scholars between the Ministry of Finance and AC (the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations). Please check links for more information on salary  and taxation .

The successful candidate will be enrolled at this university in accordance with faculty regulations and the Danish Ministerial Order on the PhD Programme at the Universities (PhD order).

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

Application must be made in the form of a Declaration of Interest including the following:
• A research proposal/description of your approach to the above project (max one page excluding references)
• A letter stating your specific interest, motivation and qualifications for the project in question (max. two pages) (please attach this under box "Application form")
• Detailed CV, including personal contact information, education, work/research experience and skills relevant for the position, and publications/manuscripts
• Copies of diplomas, Bachelor as well as Master’s degree, including transcript of notes/grades. If awaiting Master's diploma, provide a written statement from the supervisor.
• At least two signed reference letters (with referee contact details and relationship). Should your referees wish to send their letters directly to us, please have them use e-mail: mentioning your name and the title of the position in the subject line. And please note that these also need to reach us before deadline.

Shortlisting may be used in the assessment process.

Further information about the PhD-study can be found at the homepage of the University .

Applications must be submitted electronically using the link "Apply online". Attached files must be in Adobe PDF or Word format. Each box can only contain a single file of max. 10 Mb. We strongly recommend that you read How to apply before you apply.

Please access the application form directly via the above mentioned link, and please find more information on open positions in ATLAS via the ATLAS homepage.  

Incomplete applications and applications received after the deadline will neither be considered nor evaluated. This also applies to reference letters.

Further information for international applicants about entering and working in Denmark.

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