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Department of Microbiology, Tumor and Cell Biology (MTC) at Karolinska Institutet conducts research and teaching in immunology, infection biology, cell biology and cancer. MTC has about 430 active employees, including 100 PhD students, 50 postdoctoral researchers and 26 professors. Key words are multidisciplinary, bridging, translational, national and international collaborations.

A doctoral position is an available doctoral education project to which a PhD student is to be recruited. After the selection process the process for admission to doctoral education will commence. An admission decision will not be taken until an individual study plan has been approved by the departmental admission board.

For more information regarding doctoral (PhD) education, see: http://www.ki.se/doctoral

Research group
The successful candidate will be part of a multidisciplinary and collaborative research team active within the fields of RNA biology and genomics. The Kutter lab explores the molecular mechanism by which noncoding RNAs regulate protein-coding genes and genome structure in mammalian cell lines, healthy and diseases somatic tissue. The roles of noncoding RNAs are interrogated by genome- and transcriptome-wide by employing a combination of next generation sequencing technologies and high-throughput genetic screening approaches, developing computational methods, along with additional biochemical, molecular and cell biological methods (Rudolph et al. PLoS Genetics, 2016; Schmitt et al. Genome Research, 2014; Kutter et al. PLoS Genetics, 2012; Kutter et al. Nature Genetics 2011). The group uses an integrative and collaborative approach, and works closely with experimental and computational groups at the MTC, Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab), and other local and international research groups.

The laboratory is located in the newly established SciLifeLab on the Karolinska Institute campus in Stockholm. The SciLifeLab offers an attractive research environment, provides state-of-the-art instrumentation and core facilities, and is home to the second largest sequencing cluster in Europe. The SciLifeLab is a joint effort between Karolinska Institute, the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), and Stockholm University. It hosts research groups with diverse backgrounds and expertise, creating a unique interface between basic biology, genomics, bioengineering, drug discovery, and translational medicine.

For more information on the work of the laboratory, please visit https://www.scilifelab.se/researchers/claudia-kutter/.

The doctoral education project and the duties of the student
The PhD studies correspond to 4 years of full-time studies. This includes lab work, courses, seminars, and presentation of results at meetings. Other responsibilities include development of methodology and work routines, literature review, statistical analysis and draft scientific manuscripts.

The human body consists of hundreds of highly specialized and morphologically diverse cells, yet virtually every cell in the body contains the same genetic information. To exert cell-specific functions, high fidelity mechanisms restrict the expression and processing to only a particular set of genes and transcripts. Abnormal cell behavior as seen in many fatal human diseases, such as cancer, is often the consequence of aberrant transcripts formation. The research program for this position focuses on the regulation of noncoding RNAs during cell differentiation and disease progression, with a particular interest in the involvement of RNA binding proteins during transcript processing and how they synergize with other cofactors in mammalian systems by using diverse cell lines, mouse and human tissues as model system.

The successful applicant will apply and optimize novel transcriptome- and genome-wide approaches (such as RNA-sequencing and epigenome profiling techniques) to study the processing and regulation of noncoding RNAs in cultured cells, carry out validation experiments involving biochemical and molecular biological tools, and participate in the general duties of the team. The post holder will take a strong lead in the project design and management as well as data generation, analyses and interpretation, and collaborate with other team members. The ideal candidate is expected to report the scientific results by writing scientific papers, attending scientific meetings, and effectively communicate with peers. The ability to work in a highly interdisciplinary and international environment, and to engage in continuous professional development is a must.

The primary project supervisor is Assistant Professor Claudia Kutter. The candidate will be working with postdoctoral researchers in the Kutter lab and will be co-supervised by Assistant Professor Vicente Pelechano (MTC, SciLifeLab).

Entry requirements for doctoral education at KI
To be eligible for doctoral education following requirements has to be met:

General entry requirements
A person meets the general entry requirements for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education (according to Higher Education Ordinance Chapt 7, section 39) if he/she:

  1. has been awarded advanced/second-cycle/master qualification (i.e. master degree) or
  2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second-cycle/master level, or
  3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

Specific entry requirements
Proficiency in English equivalent to the course English B/English 6 at Swedish upper secondary school:
Proficiency in the English language can be documented by an internationally recognized test such as TOEFL or IELTS, see web-link below for more information.
Applicants who meet the general entry requirements (1 or 2 above) from a university in one of the Nordic countries fulfill the requirements in English.

For more information regarding general and specific entry requirements: http://ki.se/en/education/entry-requirements-eligibility-for-doctoral-education

Skills and personal qualities
We are looking for enthusiastic and highly motivated candidates who have a degree in Biomedicine, Genomics, Molecular Biology, Genetics and/or Biochemistry. Proven experiences in eukaryotic RNA biology, gene regulation, transcriptome-wide studies, mammalian tissue culture techniques and the CRISPR/Cas system are important. Prior knowledge in bioinformatics and R programming for statistical computing and graphics is an asset. A strong interest in interdisciplinary technology development, and novel and creative thinking abilities are essential. Applicants wishing to integrate computational and experimental biology approaches are especially encouraged to apply. The ideal candidate should be collaborative, scientifically adventurous, curiosity-driven, and should bring independent and original ideas into the project. Any previous records of independent research as well as productive interactions within a multi-disciplinary team environment (e.g. first- and/or co-author publications in high profile journals) are advantageous. Since the applicant will work in a multidisciplinary environment the ability to work with other scientist and good communication skills (proficiency in spoken and written English) are important.

Assessment criteria
A selection will be made among qualified applicants on the basis of the ability to benefit from doctoral education. 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

The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis.

Terms and conditions
All doctoral students at KI receive financial support during their doctoral education and employment on a doctoral studentship is the most common sort of support. During the time between recruitment and admission a short-term employment can be offered for up to 6 months.

Application process
An application must contain the following documents in English:

  • A personal letter and curriculum vitae
  • A copy of degree certificates and associated certificates
  • A copy of degree projects and any previous publications
  • Contact details of three referees

The application is to be submitted through the MyNetwork recruitment system.

Type of employment Doktorandplats
Contract type Full time
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Stockholm
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number 2-386/2017
  • Claudia Kutter, claudia.kutter@ki.se
Union representative
  • Cecilia Björkdahl, SACO , 08-524 872 65
  • Nasrin Bavand-Chobot, OFR, Nasrin.Bavand@ki.se
  • Henry Wölling, SEKO, 08-524 840 80, henry.wolling@ki.se
Published 20.Feb.2017
Last application date 20.Mar.2017 11:59 PM CET

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