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Research Group Vascular Surgery

The prospective postdoctoral researcher will be integrated in the Vascular Surgery research group, MMK, KI. The Vascular Surgery group lead by Prof Ulf Hedin, MD, PhD is dedicated to translational and clinical research on vascular diseases and pathological vascular conditions. The Group is situated at the new BioClinicum building and consists of ~20 members including 5 PIs, researchers, clinicians, PhD students and technical staff. For more information about the Group and research activities, please visit:
Within the Vascular Surgery research group, the Team Vascular Molecular Medicine led by PI Ass Prof Ljubica Matic, MSc, PhD is specialized in molecular mechanisms underlying atherosclerosis and vascular injury . This Team gathers 5 PhD students and 1 postdoc and more information can be found at:
The vascular diseases and conditions addressed in our research are atherosclerosis, aortic aneurysms, peripheral arterial disease as well as restenosis after vascular interventions. Altogether these conditions contribute to the high overall cardiovascular mortality, dominated by complications of atherosclerosis such as myocardial infarction or stroke. In order to better understand the development and progression of vascular disease, our aim is to dissect and explore the cellular behavior and molecular pathways in complex vascular tissues. Over the past decade we have, in collaboration  together with the Vascular Surgery Clinic, Karolinska assembled several large biobanks of human and murine vascular tissues (i.e. BiKE-Biobank of Karolinska Endarterectomies; STAAAB-Stockholm Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Biobank; BiRCA-Biobank of Rat Carotid Artery injury, etc.). Our platform enables large-scale multivariate analyses of gene and protein expression from vascular lesions and blood, combined with genetic and clinical parameters, as well as follow up studies in animal and cell culture models of vascular injury and disease.

Your mission

This postdoc position is announced within the framework of a collaboration between the Vascular Surgery Group, Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet and Cardiovascular Research and Translation Science units of Novo Nordisk, Denmark. Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with more than 95 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. This heritage has given us experience and capabilities that also enable us to help people defeat obesity, haemophilia, growth disorders and other serious chronic diseases. Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs approximately 42,200 people in 80 countries and markets its products in more than 170 countries. For more information, visit, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.
The overall goal of the proposed project, with Ass Prof Ljubica Matic as the PI and Prof Ulf Hedin as co-PI, is to explore targets/pathways identified by large-scale omics analyses of human atherosclerosis, with the aim to develop novel treatment options targeting unstable atherosclerosis. Each target/pathway activity will have defined stop/go decisions reflecting considerations around safety and druggability.
The starting point and an example of the project workflow will be to explore the biology of one recently discovered candidate protein, which we have found to play a key role in smooth muscle cell activation and modulation during vascular remodeling and atheroprogression. The postdoc will further evaluate this candidate as a desirable drug target and identify various alternative possibilities of targeting this pathway. More specifically, the project will be based on characterization studies in murine models in vivo and in vitro, utilizing relevant models for mimicking vascular injury and atherosclerosis combined with modulation of the expression of this target. Importantly, the work will practically encompass microsurgery on mice and rats, primary cell isolations, sophisticated in vitro studies, as well as managing different collaborations and core facilities for transcriptomic analyses.
The project holds translational potential in opening new opportunities for improved treatment of patients with cardiovascular disease, but also carries considerable novelty in the research field. We offer a position in one of the leading groups in the field of vascular disease with an excellent network of international collaborators and longstanding experience in translational science.  The project will be conducted in a multidisciplinary environment at the interface between academia and big pharma industry, where resources and expertise in animal surgery, clinical patient material processing and bioinformatics will be available. However, excellent experimental methodological skill and dedication will be necessary for successfully conducting the project.

Your profile

The suitable candidate should have a pharmaceutical, biomedical or molecular biology background and interest in complex pathophysiology of vascular diseases. We are looking for a highly motivated person that should be dedicated to full time experimental research, have the potential to work both independently and within a translational team, and manage the close collaboration between academia and industry. The daily work is laboratory-based and includes state-of-the-art in vivo, in vitro and in situ molecular techniques, situated in modern new laboratories. Willingness to work with animals is a requirement and previous practical experience in animal and cell culture experimentation will be considered necessary. Additional experience in transcriptomic bioinformatic analyses and tissue processing will be assessed as highly meritorious.
The appointed person will be expected to plan, perform, analyze and interpret experimental results independently and within the Team, present at congresses, and participate in national/international collaboration networks. Willingness to work flexibly in order to achieve project demands and targets as agreed within a Team is necessary. Being able to organise and prioritise own work, as well as organising research within the project timetable and planned deliverables is essential. Maintaining accurate and up to date records is necessary. Fluency in English is a requirement, knowledge of Swedish is not necessary but will be considered advantageous. Good social and analytical skills are essential. Ability to travel to other countries is essential and possibilities will exist for conducting research visits to the Novo Nordisk site in Copenhagen.
Qualified to be employed as a postdoctor is one who has obtained a doctorate or has equivalent scientific competence. Applicants who have not completed a doctorate at the end of the application period may also apply, provided that all requirements for a completed degree are met before the (intended) date of employment. This must be substantiated by the applicant's main supervisor, director or equivalent.

Assessment criteria

A selection will be made among qualified applicants on the following basis proposed by the Karolinska Institutet: 

- Documented research experience and analytical skills

- Documented subject knowledge of relevance to the area of research

- Scientific articles and a track record of publications in international peer-reviewed journals

- Excellent communication skills

- Ability to manage complex projects both independently and within collaborations, particularly at the interface between clinical and laboratory staff, as well as between academia and pharmaceutical industry

- Experience and ability to supervise students and undertake teaching activities
The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis. Personal suitability is an important criterion.

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. Karolinska Institutet is a state university, which entitles to several benefits such as extended holiday and generous occupational pension. Employees also have access to our modern gym for free and receive reimbursements for medical care.

Location: Solna


An employment application must contain the following documents in English or Swedish:

  • A complete resumé, including date of the thesis defence, title of the thesis, previous academic positions, academic title, current position, academic distinctions, and committee work
  • A complete list of publications
  • A summary of current work (no more than one page)

Welcome to apply at the latest xxx

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

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

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Solna
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number 2-554/2020
  • Ljubica Matic, Ass Prof, Team Leader,
  • Ulf Hedin, Professor, Group Leader,
Union representative
  • Biborka Bereczky Veress, SACO, 46 70-173 85 75
  • Virpi Töhönen, SACO,
  • Elisabeth Noren-Krog, OFR,
Published 28.Jan.2020
Last application date 28.Feb.2020 11:59 PM CET

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