Doctoral (PhD) student position in molecular mechanisms underlying neuroinflammation with a focus on epigenetics

Updated: 20 days ago

The Department of Clinical Neuroscience (CNS) conducts research and education in the field of neuroscience from the molecular level to the society level. The clinical research and education is conducted in collaboration with Region Stockholm as well as other research groups from Karolinska Institutet and other universities.
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The research group

A successful candidate will work in the Epigenetic group headed by Associate Professor M. Jagodic , which goal is to better understand Multiple Sclerosis etiology and to improve disease management through personalized treatments and more specific biomarkers. The group is a part of the Karolinska Neuroimmunology and Multiple Sclerosis (KNIMS) centre that gathers around ~50 researchers working on different aspects of pathogenesis of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), including genetics, epidemiology, immunology and epigenetics, with excellent clinical cohorts and experimental models. The Epigenetics group is physically located at the Center for Molecular Medicine   that gathers ~500 researchers working on complex diseases, with extensive national and international collaborations and state-of-the-art facilities. The Epigenetic group studies epigenetic mechanisms underlying neuroinflammation and neuronal loss in MS using both large-scale omics approaches in clinical samples as well as advanced molecular methods coupled with in-vitro and in-vivo functional studies.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

We are recruiting a doctoral student who will work on the project entitled “Targeting Multiple Sclerosis risk factors using applied epigenetics: a further step in understanding and treating chronic inflammatory diseases” supported by a prestigious European Research Council (ERC-CoG) and Karolinska Institutet Doctoral (KID) funding.

For this project, we are looking for a PhD student who shares our passion for translational epigenetics, is ready to join our very collaborative team, and is highly motivated to perform molecular and cellular, ex-vivo and in-vivo work.

As a PhD student in our team, you will:
  • be actively involved in all stages of the project planning,
  • carry out immunological, molecular and cell biology techniques as well as performing data analysis, interpretation and dissemination,
  • carry out different multi-omics approaches including, but not limited to, epigenome, transcriptome, chromatin conformation experiments,
  • apply cutting-edge molecular tools for targeted epigenome modifications for functional studies in ex-vivo/in-vitro cellular models
  • conduct in-vivo exploration in animal models of neuroinflammation/neurodegeneration
  • develop comprehensive knowledge in the fields of neuroimmunology and epigenetics,
  • work in close collaboration with scientists and physicians in the fields of epigenetics, computational biology, immunology and neurology who will provide constant support and training,
  • develop strong communication and collaborative skills.

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

The successful candidate should have:

  • Good knowledge and understanding of cellular and molecular biology (minimum Bachelor level)
  • Strong interest in Epigenetics, Neuroimmunology and Translational research
  • Solid documented lab work experience (e.g. degree works, lab internships etc.)
  • Documented (i.e. certificate, course, project work) theoretical and practical knowledge of central nervous system diseases
  • Documented (i.e. certificate, course, project work) knowledge in animal models and experimentation. Practical experience (FELASA B/C or equivalent) in conducting studies in animal models of nervous diseases is an utmost advantage (e.g. rodent handling, drug delivery, behavioral scoring, tissue collection etc.)
  • Excellent communication skills in English and good ability to translate and communicate results
  • Good interpersonal skills and ability to work both independently but also as part of a team

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.

Read more about Maja Jagodic's research group.

Read more about Center for Molecular Medicine.  

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