The Department of Laboratory Medicine
The Department of Laboratory Medicine consists of 7 divisions and is active in many areas of Laboratory Medicine. The department is involved in advanced basic scientific, clinical and epidemiological research. The department is one of the largest departments of education at Karolinska Institutet.

The Division of Clinical Microbiology
At the department of Clinical Microbiology, disease processes in cells and tissues caused by microbes infecting humans are studied. The research is translational with focus on problems identified in clinical care and on the development of improved diagnostics and therapeutic approaches. The research spans from molecular virology, virus-cell interactions and the understanding of individual viral genes and proteins, to the effects these have on the infected patient. Within bacteriology, the effects of antibiotics on the gut microbiota are studied as well as the interaction between bacteria and protozoes.

The research group
The research group headed by Associate Professor Annika Karlsson studies how to achieve optimized treatment of HIV in perinatally infected children, pregnant women, adults, and in HIV-associated cancers. We are the link between immune response and health in treated HIV-infection. The group contains immunological, infectious disease, microbiology, obstetric and paediatric skills with major national and international networks.

In an era where HIV-infected individuals require life-long antiretroviral treatment (ART) to control viral replication it is important to reveal the mechanisms linked to adverse health effects in order to refine therapeutic interventions. Today, the optimal combinational ART for HIV-positive individuals during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence with regard to adverse health effects, viral control, size of the viral reservoir, immune function, and microbiota remains unknown. The goal of the studies conducted in the research group is to guide future treatment recommendations for HIV-infected pregnant women, children and adolescents with implications for immunopathogenesis and clinical outcome.

Do you want to contribute to top quality medical research?
A doctoral education consists of supervised research, combined with courses and other educational activities. An individual study plan is established for each doctoral student. For a doctoral degree, the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral education is required.

We are now seeking a doctoral student who will work on the project entitled “The link between immune response and health in treated HIV-infected children and pregnant women”.

For this project, we are looking for a doctoral student who shares our passion for virology, immunology and bioinformatics, and who is ready to join our very collaborative team, and is highly motivated to perform molecular and cellular, ex-vivo and in-vivo work.

The doctoral student project
The CD4 and CD8 T cells are an important part of the adaptive cellular immune system in both cancer and chronic infection becomes highly dysfunctional during an HIV-infection. This process is usually known as T cell exhaustion. Reports of the long-term consequences of ART in adults still reveals an increased risk of cancer, autoimmunity, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, among other disorders. A leading cause of adverse health effects are persistent immune exhaustion of the cellular immune system despite ART.

The project duties
The procted duties will include- but are not limited to;

  • Handling and processing of human samples

  • Multi-color flow-cytometry analysis

  • Cell sorting

  • Automatic flow cytometry analysis

  • Identifying serum- and plasma markers

  • Microbiome analysis, including bioinformatics

As a PhD student in our team, you will:

  • be actively involved in all stages of the project planning
  • carry out immunological, molecular and cell biology techniques as well as performing data analysis, interpretation and dissemination
  • carry out different experimental approaches in BSL2 and BSL3 laboratories
  • gain the ability to present, write and discuss research in an international context
  • develop comprehensive knowledge in the fields of virology and immunology
  • work in close collaboration with scientists and physicians in the fields of virology, immunology, bioinformatics, infectious diseases, obstetrics and paediatrics who will provide constant support and training
  • develop strong communication and collaborative skills

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 looking for a highly motivated, technically skilled, and creative person that have a strong attitude for cooperation and teamwork. Proven experiences in virology, cellular immunology, flow cytometry, cell culture techniques, and prior knowledge in bioinformatics and R programming is meriting. Excellent written and oral communication skills in English are needed, in our international work environment.

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

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.

Location: Flemingsberg, KI South

For further information:

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

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Type of employment PhD placement
Contract type Full time
Reference number 2-656/2020
  • Annika Karlsson,,
Union representative
  • Carina Eklund, OFR, 08-585 826 65
  • Emilie Hultin, Annica Lindkvist, SACO, 08-524 832 86, 08-524 837 46
  • Henry Wölling, SEKO, 08-524 840 80
Published 07.Feb.2020
Last application date 16.Mar.2020 11:59 PM CET

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