Karolinska Institutet, Department of Biosciences and Nutrition, Svensson (PSV)

The Department of Biosciences and Nutrition performs research and education in several areas of medical science including bioorganic chemistry, molecular endocrinology, cancer biology, functional genomics, systems biology, epigenetics, structural biochemistry, cellular virology, and nutrition. It offers an excellent international research and working environment, including around 300 scientists, students, administrative and technical personnel. The Department resides in the new biomedical research building Neo, aimed at being a creative and open environment that enables meetings, synergies, and exploration of areas of mutual interest across disciplines.

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 research group of Peter Svensson at the department of Biosciences and Nutrition is looking for a Phd student in the field of HIV. The lab studies interactions between viruses and the host cell. By understanding how these interact we hope to gain insights into both cellular processes and the viral replicative cycle. Upon infection of HIV-1, the causative agent for AIDS, the virus integrates in the genome of T-cells. There the provirus may stay latent in chromatin for years before it activates and re-spreads the infection. HIV-1 latency remains the main obstacle in the treatment of HIV-positive individuals.

Researchers in our group investigate the establishment, maintenance and transition between chromatin states of the HIV-1 provirus. The circuitry of HIV-1 latency is modeled and tested in cell lines, as well as primary cells from both HIV- and HIV+ donors. In the lab we also view epigenetic state reversal of HIV-1 as a general model to understand the activation and silencing of other genetic loci important for e.g. development and cancer.  

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student
The overall aim of this PhD project is to identify and characterize mechanisms that control the latent HIV provirus. The student will study chromatin and transcription in a range of cell systems, from established cell lines, via in vitro infected primary cells to material directly isolated from HIV patients. A range of innovative method will be used, including those based on flow cytometry, microscopy and single cell chromatin characterization.

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:

  1. have been awarded a second-cycle/advanced/master qualification (i.e. master degree) or
  2. 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
  3. 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 are seeking a highly motivated, enthusiastic and ambitious student with strong interest in chromatin and HIV. Candidates must be able to work within a team environment but retain independence to explore their own hypotheses and results and drive their own projects. The applicant must be fluent in English, with excellent communication and advanced writing skills. The PhD student is expected to take a strong lead in project management, data generation, as well as analyses and interpretation. Prior experience with epigenetics, virology, microscopy as well as molecular biology and analytical methods is considered an advantage for this project. Authorship on research articles is highly meriting, as is previous training in research laboratories.

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

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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.


Want to make a difference? Join us and contribute to better health for all

Type of employment PhD placement
Contract type Full time
Reference number 2-383/2020
  • Thomas Tinglöv, Head of Administration, +46-8-524 835 49
  • Peter Svensson, Researcher and Group Leader, +46-730358315
Union representative
  • Henry Wölling, SEKO, +46-8-524 840 80
  • Birgitta Lindqvist, OFR, +46-73-209 83 12
Published 24.Jan.2020
Last application date 22.Mar.2020 11:59 PM CET

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