Doctoral (PhD) student position in Dynamics in human tissue confined T cells

Updated: 8 months ago
Deadline: 02 Jan 2020

The Department of Medicine, Solna, is one of the largest departments at Karolinska Institutet. The department consists of several divisions that are separated into different research groups. The core activities of the department are research, doctoral education and undergraduate education for medical and biomedical students. The research has three main profiles: allergy, cardiovascular medicine and inflammatory diseases.

Do you want to contribute to top quality medical research?

To be a doctoral student means to devote oneself to a research project under supervision of experienced researchers and following an individual study plan. For a doctoral degree, the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral education is required.

The research group
The Center for Molecular Medicine (CMM) is a nationally leading and internationally competitive environment for studies of tissue inflammation. Ample interaction between groups interested in different aspects of basic and applied molecular and cellular immunology leads to innovative approaches to address basic and clinical biological questions. The Eidsmo laboratory is part of the Rheumatology division at the Department of Medicine, Solna, where interdisciplinary research focus on tissue immunology and epidemiology. The Eidsmo laboratory focus on basic T cell biology in human tissues and pathogenic mechanisms by which skin T cells drive chronic inflammatory diseases.  The laboratory offers state-of-the art techniques, from basic cell sorting of tissue derived cells to cutting-edge molecular and imaging techniques.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student
This doctoral project will focus on T cell biology in human tissues in health, autoimmunity and malignancies. We seek a highly motivated student to pursue a PhD in medical sciences with focus on tissue immunology. This PhD-project will investigate basic properties of T cells in human tissues and will take advantage of published (Cheuk, Immunity 2017, Gallais-Serezal, JACI 2019) and ongoing studies.  Liv Eidsmo will serve as a main supervisor. Vitiligo and metastatic melanomas are the main human diseases in which T cell biology will be addressed. The work is performed in close collaboration with the co-supervisors, Caroline Gahm, Ada Girnita and Carmen Gerlach, basic T cell biologists and clinicians, to understand the fine-tuned balance between T cell biology in skin diseases such as vitiligo and melanoma.

The experimental design will include work on patient material, cell lines, animal models and primary skin-derived cells. In close contact with surgeons and dermatologists, the student will learn cutting edge techniques such as single cell RNA sequencing and spatial transcriptomics with deuterium labelling. The student will collect the tissues from surgery and prepare T cells from skin, fat and blood using flow cytometry based sorting or MACS based magnetic enrichment of CD8 T cells from epidermis, dermis, subcutaneous fat and blood. More techniques that will be used in this project are confocal imaging, qPCR, different incubation techniques and Nanostring technology.

We also require that the successful candidate will participate in journal clubs, seminars, research group meetings and other educational activities.

What do we offer?
A creative and inspiring environment full of expertise and curiosity. Karolinska Institutet is one of the world's leading medical universities. Our vision is to pursue the development of knowledge about life and to promote a better health for all. At Karolinska Institutet, we conduct successful medical research and hold the largest range of medical education in Sweden. As a doctoral student you are offered an individual research project, a well-educated supervisor, a vast range of elective courses and the opportunity to work in a leading research group. Karolinska Institutet collaborates with prominent universities from all around the world, which ensures opportunities for international exchanges. You will be employed on a doctoral studentship which means that you receive a contractual salary. Employees also have access to our modern gym for free and receive reimbursements for medical care.

Eligibility requirements for doctoral education
In order to participate in the selection for a doctoral position, you must meet the following general (A) and specific (B) eligibility requirements at latest by the application deadline.

It is your responsibility to certify eligibility by following the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

A) General eligibility requirement
You meet the general eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

  • have been awarded a second-cycle/advanced/master qualification (i.e. master degree) or
  • have satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the advanced/second-cycle/master level, or
  • have acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.*
  • Follow the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

    *If you claim equivalent knowledge, follow the instructions on the web page Assessing equivalent knowledge for general eligibility for doctoral education.

    B) Specific eligibility requirement

    You meet the specific eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

    - Show proficiency in English equivalent to the course English B/English 6 at Swedish upper secondary school.

    Follow the instructions on the web page English language requirements for doctoral education.

    Verification of your documents
    Karolinska Institutet checks the authenticity of your documents. Karolinska Institutet reserves the right to revoke admission if supporting documents are discovered to be fraudulent. Submission of false documents is a violation of Swedish law and is considered grounds for legal action.

    Skills and personal qualities
    - We seek enthusiastic, independent and hard-working individuals with a critical mind and a strong drive to pursue a career in science. It is essential to work according to the scientific method and to organise and structure the work independently and together with the rest of the group and supervisors

    Desired merits:
    - Rotations in laboratories working on human tissue biology/immunology.

    - Previous exposure to work with human inflammatory diseases.

    Necessary merits:
    - Excellent communication skills and abilities to collaborate and work in a highly dynamic international research team are essential.

    - Excellent skills in English, written and spoken.

    - Knowledge of experimental techniques within immunology and molecular biology such as flow cytometry, cell sorting, confocal imaging, real-time PCR or other methods to address transcriptional changes.

    - Knowledge of In vitro or ex vivo experimental systems.

    - Recent (last 3 years) MSc or MD with a background in immunology or tissue biology.  Alternatively, medical doctors with background in dermatology or oncology with a license to practice in Sweden.

    Terms and conditions
    The doctoral student will be employed on a doctoral studentship maximum 4 years full-time.

    Application process
    Submit your application and supporting documents through the Varbi recruitment system. Use the button in the top right corner and follow the instructions.

    Your application should contain the following documents:

    - A personal letter and a curriculum vitae (Swedish or English)
    - Degree projects and previous publications, if any (Swedish or English)
    - Any other documentation showing the desirable skills and personal qualities described above (Swedish or English)
    - Documents certifying your general eligibility (see A above)
    - Documents certifying your specific eligibility (see B above)

    A selection will be made among eligible applicants on the basis of the ability to benefit from doctoral education. The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis.

    Karolinska Institutet uses the following bases of assessment:

    - Documented subject knowledge of relevance to the area of research
    - Analytical skill
    - Other documented knowledge or experience that may be relevant to doctoral studies in the subject.

     All applicants will be informed when the recruitment is completed.

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