PhD Scholarship Exposome and epigenetics in the Lifelines cohort study (1.0 FTE)

Updated: about 2 months ago
Deadline: 31 Oct 2021

PhD Scholarship at University of Groningen / Campus Fryslân and University Medical Centre Groningen (UCMG)

The University of Groningen offers a four-year PhD student scholarship opportunity to complete a dissertation on a topic related to Exposome and epigenetics in the Lifelines cohort study. Lifelines is a large, multi-generational, prospective cohort study that includes over 167,000 participants (10%) from the northern population of the Netherlands. Through data collected via questionnaires, biological samples, and in-depth examination it provides an excellent opportunity for the study of the etiology of different diseases focusing on multifactorial environmental risk factors ( The PhD candidate will be supervised by Prof. Andrej Zwitter and Dr Valentina Gallo (University of Groningen, Campus Fryslân) and Prof. Marike Boezen (University Medical Centre Groningen). Prospective candidates are invited to write a project proposal describing a molecular epidemiological prospective study investigating exposome and epigenetics in Lifelines, possibly in relation to respiratory and neurological diseases, or some intermediate phenotype, e.g. the lung-brain axis. Of particular interest will be projects incorporating also the exposure to pesticides in the exposome. Some basic information on the Lifeline study design, and potential data availability is to be found on the website. Interdisciplinary proposals that show contextualization of results into the broader environmental context under the umbrella name of Planetary health are very welcome.

The student will be a member of the “Sustainable Health” team at Campus Fryslân led by Dr Valentina Gallo, which is comprised of several PhD students, assistant professors, and interdisciplinary staff.

The PhD candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School Campus Fryslân (GSCF) and can benefit from affiliations at other faculties at the University of Groningen (Aletta Jacob School of Public Health) and at the University Medical Centre Groningen (UCMG). If interested, the PhD candidate could also have a role to play in the new Master’s program in Sustainable Health, currently under development.

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