PhD Candidate in Biophysics and Nanofabrication for Biomedical Research

Updated: 4 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 15 Dec 2023

About the job

We have a vacancy for a highly motivated PhD candidate to join the Bionanotechnology and Biomaterials group at the Department of Physics, section for Biophysics and Medical Technology. The objective of the PhD project is to develop, fabricate and study advanced nanostructured surfaces that can be used to probe how cells respond to mechanical inputs. The shape and structure of the cell nucleus are vital indicators of cancer and are critical for diagnostics and treatment development.

Yet, existing tools for inducing controlled nuclear deformations and measuring cell and nuclear responses are inadequate, leaving life science researchers without sufficient means to advance their understanding in these areas. The position will allow the candidate to become expert in micro- and nanotechnology for biomedical research.

The main supervisor of the PhD candidate will be Professor Pawel Sikorski. The project part of a larger research effort, coordinated by Associate Prof. Jonas Paulsen and in collaboration with Prof Cinzia Progida at The Department of Biosciences, UiO

Duties of the position

PhD candidate will work on a research project that proposes the development and implementation of novel nanostructured surfaces to induce controlled nuclear deformation and subsequently read out nuclear effects on DNA condensation and gene expression. In particular, on applications of electron beam lithography to fabricated libraries of nanostructured surfaces, that will help to establish the connection between surface topography and induced nuclear deformation. Furthermore, the candidate will work on developing alternative fabrication methods that allow fabricating relevant surfaces at a higher throughput and lower cost. The acquired knowledge, as well as developed experimental tools, will advance fields such as mechanobiology, genomics, cell biology, and nanotechnology.

Required selection criteria

  • You must have a degree in one of the selected fields of study: physics, nanotechnology, biophysics, bioengineering, bionanotechnology or a closely related field. Candidates with a degree in chemical engineering, biology or cell biology do not have required background for this position.
  • Your education must correspond to a five-year Norwegian degree program, where 120 credits are obtained at master's level
  • You must have a strong academic background from your previous studies and an average grade from the master's degree program, or equivalent education, which is equal to B or better compared with NTNU's grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic basis. If you have a weaker grade background, you may be assessed if you can document that you are particularly suitable for a PhD education.
  • Master's students can apply, but the master's degree must be obtained  by  end of the 2024 academic year.
  • You must meet the requirements for admission to the faculty's doctoral program.
  • Document written and oral English language skills

The appointment is to be made in accordance with Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, Phd candidate, research assistant and specialist candidate  and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosodophiae Doctor (PhD) in artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant 

Preferred selection criteria

  • Documented collaborative skills
  • Hands-on research experience with clean room based fabrication or characterization techniques
  • Previous specialization and research that includes or combines topics such as photolithography, electron beam lithography, electron microscopy, advanced optical microscopy. 
  • Interest in model systems to study biological processes. Interests and education in basic cell biology.

Personal characteristics

  • Enthusiastic and highly motivate
  • Creative, good at finding solution
  • Able to work effectively on their own and in a team
  • Diligent, thorough, and hard-working
  • Able to work structured and goal oriented

Emphasis will be placed on personal and interpersonal qualities.

We offer

Salary and conditions

As a PhD candidate (code 1017) you are normally paid from gross NOK 532 200 per annum before tax. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years.

Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD programme in biophysics  within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants , and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

The position is subject to external funding.

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English.

Publications and other scientific work must be attached to the application. Please note that your application will be considered based solely on information submitted by the application deadline. You must therefore ensure that your application clearly demonstrates how your skills and experience fulfil the criteria specified above.

The application must include : 

  • CV and certificates
  • transcripts and diplomas for bachelor's and master's degrees. If you have not completed the master's degree, you must submit a confirmation that the master's thesis has been or will be submitted before 30.06.2024.
  • Documentation of a completed master's degree must be presented before taking up the position.
  • Name and contact information of three  references.
  • If you have publications or other relevant research work.

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both bachelor's and master's education, in addition to other higher education. Description of the documentation required can be found here . If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well.

We will take joint work into account. If it is difficult to identify your efforts in the joint work, you must enclose a short description of your participation.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA.

General information

Working at NTNU

NTNU believes that inclusion and diversity is our strength. We want to recruit people with different competencies, educational backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to solving our social responsibilities within education and research. We will facilitate for our employees’ needs.

NTNU is working actively to increase the number of women employed in scientific positions and has a number of resources to promote equality.  

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

A public list of applicants with name, age, job title and municipality of residence is prepared after the application deadline. If you want to reserve yourself from entry on the public applicant list, this must be justified. Assessment will be made in accordance with current legislation . You will be notified if the reservation is not accepted.

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Professor , email [email protected] . If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Magnus Gautvik, e-mail: [email protected]

If you think this looks interesting and in line with your qualifications, please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates attached. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Upon request, you must be able to obtain certified copies of your documentation.  

Application deadline: 15.12.23

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Physics

Our research and teaching are both experimental and theoretical, covering a wide range of disciplines. Our activities contribute to development of new medical technology and to finding solutions for the next generation’s communication technology, energy utilization and development of materials. The Department of Physics  is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Natural Sciences .

Deadline 15th December 2023
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Høgskoleringen 5, 7491 Trondh

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