APPLY NOW

 

 

Applications to two of our fully funded PhD positions are now open!

Check out the scientific projects and all further details (eligibility criteria, timeline, training and personal development opportunities) in the vacancies list below.

Don’t miss the deadline! 30 July 2021 (midnight CEST)

 

WHAT IS INTERCEPT-MDS?

EXPLORING CELL-TO-CELL HETEROGENEITY AND EXPLOITING EPIGENETIC REGULATION FOR THE INTERCEPTION OF MYELOID DISEASE CELLS

INTERCEPT-MDS brings together 10 European public and private institutions in a European network of experts in leukaemia, epigenetics and single-cell technology.

Through a multidisciplinary and multisectoral approach, our aim is to train Europe’s first experts in the novel field of disease interception: treating a disease before it fully develops by removing altered cells.

SCIENTIFIC EXCELLENCE AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

The highly complementary composition of the INTERCEPT-MDS network will provide all the key expertise and infrastructure to support the scientific excellence of our PhD candidates.

Experts from two sectors (academia and industry) and two research environments (clinical and basic) across Europe will offer a unique multidisciplinary and multisectoral training opportunity in the novel field of disease interception.

Successful applicants will be enrolled in a PhD programme and will receive a structured training programme consisting of soft skill courses, targeted workshops, conferences, retreats, social events and networking.

In addition, our PhD candidates will carry out secondments in other European institutions within the network to provide the needed interactions to achieve research and training excellence, and improve their future career perspectives in academia and the private sector.

VACANCIES LIST

We have the following positions available for highly motivated PhD candidates:

PhD Project 9: Exploiting 3D organotypic niche models to dissect the cellular crosstalk between niche and haematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) in human myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS).

The PhD candidate will combine experimental and computational approaches to dissect the cellular crosstalk between niche and haematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) with the goal to identify niche dependencies that can be exploited for disease interception. The project will make extensive use of innovative 3D Human Organotypic Marrow Environments (3DHOMEs) to functionally evaluate niche dependencies and perform screens to identify druggable modules that promote the fitness and progressive clonal dominance of malignant MDS cells. Results will be confirmed using patient-derived xenograft models and primary patient samples. 

To achieve this the successful candidate will use a large panel of wet lab techniques, including primary cell culture, multiparameter flow cytometry, various imaging platforms, CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genetic engineering and animal work. Additionally, the candidate will use single cell RNA sequencing approaches, to carry out a comprehensive and spatially resolved analysis of the composition and priming of both the MDS and the stromal compartment. As such, preference will be given to candidate(s) with experience/background in computational science/bioinformatics. 

Host institution: Tumor Biology and Experimental Therapy, Georg-Speyer-Haus. Frankfurt, Germany.

Supervisor: Hind Medyouf (visit website here). 

Envisioned secondments: To further broaden the expertise of the PhD candidate and support the project, two secondments of 3 months at GenomeScan B.V. (Leiden, The Netherlands) and 2 months at University of Bergen (Bergen, Norway), will be offered as an integral part of the PhD project.

Application deadline: 30 July 2021 (midnight CEST). Applications will be solely accepted through the INTERCEPT-MDS online application form and must be in English.

PhD Project 3: Dissecting the cellular crosstalk between the bone marrow microenvironment and hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) in clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate potential (CHIP), myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) and secondary acute myeloid leukemia (AML)

Prof. Katharina Götze’s lab focuses on interaction between hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPC) and their bone marrow microenvironment (niche) to identify and target critical pathways directing clonal evolution and enabling survival and expansion of mutated HSPC. The project will dissect the cellular crosstalk between niche and HSPCs in the developmental trajectory from clonal hematopoiesis of indeterminate potential (CHIP) to myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) and secondary acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with a focus on inflammatory pathways. Using primary patient samples, the PhD candidate will employ a variety of wet lab techniques including single cell (sc)RNA sequencing, ATAC sequencing, multiparameter flow cytometry, spatial resolution by confocal microscopy and CRISPR/Cas editing of primary niche cells, with the ultimate goal of identifying specific triggers of disease progression. 

PhD candidates interested in translational cancer research, hematopoiesis, inflammation, leukemia and/or stem cells are encouraged to apply. Prior experience with stem cell assays, flow cytometry, RNA sequencing, bioinformatics or computational biology is highly desirable.

Host institution: Klinikum rechts der Isar der TU München. Munich, Germany. 

Supervisor: Katharina Götze (visit website here). 

Envisioned secondments: To further broaden the expertise of the PhD candidate and support the project, two secondments of 3 months at Dr. Hind Medyouf’s lab (Georg Speyer Haus, Frankfurt, Germany) to employ co-transplantation mouse models and 3 months at GenomeScan B.V. (Leiden, Netherlands) for generation and in-depth analyses of scRNAseq data will be offered as an integral part of the PhD project.

Application deadline: 30 July 2021 (midnight CEST). Applications will be solely accepted through the INTERCEPT-MDS online application form and must be in English.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
Applicants can be of any nationality and must fulfil the following conditions:

• Not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Germany for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to their recruitment (which is planned between July and October 2021).

• Be in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and not have been awarded a doctoral degree at the date of recruitment.

• Have a master’s degree relevant to the PhD project or an equivalent qualification that would entitle them to begin a doctorate by the time they are recruited (July-October 2021). Applications are welcome from candidates who are currently finishing their master studies (state the expected defense date in the application).

• Have a high level of proficiency in written and spoken English.

ARE YOU ELIGIBLE? THEN, PREPARE YOUR APPLICATION!

Applications must contain the following documents (in pdf):

• A CV (including publications, if any).

• A motivation letter.

• 2 reference letters or contacts (who might be contacted after the application deadline).

• Copies of Bachelor’s and Master’s degree certificates. Candidates should include the transcripts in English of academic records for the studies that make them eligible for a doctoral programme. If these studies have been completed by the deadline for applications, the total number of credits for the degree and the credits awarded must also appear.