PhD position

36 hours a week
€ 3.017 - € 3.824

Closing date: June 30

Posted on

PhD student position: Metabolic modulation to enhance efficacy of CAR-T immunotherapy.

Job description

Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cells, immune cells that are modified by CAR expression and as such are capable of killing tumor cells, constitute a therapy for patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). CAR T-cell therapy has proven to be highly successful in patients with DLBCL when all other treatment options have failed, and has yielded overall response rates of ~50%. The Dept. of Hematology has established an academic Point-of-Care manufacturing program for CD19 CAR-T and is in the unique position to develop strategies to increase the efficacy of CAR-T therapy. The aim of this project is to perform in-depth metabolic profiling of CAR-T cells and identify key metabolic regulators that dictate resistance to therapy. Subsequently, rational design of next-gen CAR-Ts exploiting these metabolic pathways to augment potency will be developed and preclinically validated. This project is a collaboration between the Departments of Hematology and Pediatrics at the UMCG. We aim to improve the efficacy of CAR T-cells by modulating intracellular metabolic pathways.

Working environment

The University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) is one of the largest medical centers in The Netherlands. More than 12.000 employees provide patient care and medical education and perform biomedical research. The UMCG has recently implemented on-site production or point-of-care (PoC) of CAR T-cells. The environment is ambitious, dynamic, and international, with state-of-the-art facilities. You will have the opportunity to perform cutting-edge research in the Departments of Hematology and Pediatrics, in the building of the European Research Institute for the Biology of Aging (ERIBA), and to work with renowned scientists in the field of metabolism and hematology. You will also have the opportunity to participate in courses offered by the Graduate School of Sciences. The aim of the PhD program is to prepare candidates for a career as independent scientist.

What do we need

  • You are a highly motivated candidate with an interest in immunotherapy and metabolism.
  • You have an MSc in Biomedical Sciences, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Biochemistry or a related field.
  • You have excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • You have the ability to work in a research group.
  • Experience in the fields of metabolism, immunology, and oncology is an advantage, as is experience with mouse models, flow cytometry, histology, cell biology, and molecular biology techniques.

The UMCG has a preventive Hepatitis B policy. The UMCG can provide you with the vaccination, should it be required for your position.
In case of specific professions a ‘Certificate of Good Conduct’ is required.

What do we offer

We offer a full-time appointment (36 hours a week) for a period of three years. The preferred starting date is September 1st, 2024. Your salary will be a minimum of € 3.017,- gross per month in the first year and a maximum of € 3.824,- gross per month (PhD salary scale) in the final year, based on a full-time appointment. In addition, the UMCG will offer you 8% holiday pay, and 8.3% end-of-year bonus. The conditions of employment comply with the Collective Labour Agreement for Medical Centres (CAO-UMC).

For questions about the position

Any questions? Do contact us.

Marit Westerterp associate professor

How to apply

Please use the the digital application form at the bottom of this page - only these will be processed.
You can apply until 30 June 2024.
Within half an hour after sending the digital application form you will receive an email- confirmation with further information.

Applications should include:

  • Cover letter
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Contact information of at least two references
  • Academic transcripts


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Do you have any questions?

We would like it if you would contact us if you have any questions about working at UMCG

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