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CD8 T Cell Reactivity Towards Viral Elements, Playing a role for Cancer and Organ Transplantation

  • // Denmark
  • University/Institute Name Technical University of Denmark (DTU)
  • University/Institute Name Department of Experimental & Translational Immunology
  • Attendance Type On Campus
  • Position Duration3 years
  • Position Funding Type
  • Application deadlineExpired

Position Details (PhD Program)

If you are establishing your career as scientist and you are looking for the best possible foundation for fulfilling your dreams and ambitions, it is right here in front of you. At DTU Health Tech you will work with world leading scientists in the fast developing field of immunology.

2 PhD positions are available in the Section of Experimental and Translational Immunology (xTI), DTU Health Tech at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU).

In the Section of Experimental and Translational Immunology, we are focusing on understanding immune regulation, recognitions and signaling to unravel disease mechanism, and translate immunological finding into therapeutic strategies via design of nanomaterial to actively engage or manipulate the immune system.

The present projects will be conducted in the research group ‘T cells & Cancer’, under supervision of Professor Sine Reker Hadrup (project 1) and in a newly established the research group, under supervision of Associate Professor Sunil Kumar Saini. We are world leaders in detection and modification of antigen specific T cells, and will in the current projects 1) explore T cell involvement in clearance of viral infections, of particular relevance for organ transplant patients. How can the T cell responses be supported and activated in combination with immune inhibitory treatment to avoid organ rejection? These are the questions we will explore in project 1. 2) Explore T cell recognition to viral element integrated into or genome, normally silences, but though reactivation upon malignant transformation these may serve as targets for T cell recognition of cancer cells. This will be explored in project 2.

Responsibilities and qualifications
Key question to address:

  • Mapping the of CD8 T cell recognition towards viral antigen or genome embedded viral elements
  • Describe the T cell recognition landscape toward a large pool of predicted MHC I epitope
  • Determine the impact of such T cell recognition in the relevant therapeutic/disease setting
  • Determine the functional and phenotypic characteristics of T cells and their relevance

Experimental methods & tasks:

  • Build large pMHC multimer libraries for T cell screening
  • Apply multicolor flow cytometry analyses
  • T cell culturing and functional evaluations
  • Single-cell technologies
  • Prediction of MHC I epitope using computational tools

Be trained in:

  • Immunology: T cell recognition, antigen presentation & T cell epitope mapping
  • Expression and folding of MHC monomers. QC and validation testing
  • MHC mulitmer generation – fluorescence and DNA barcode labelled MHC multimers
  • Large library pMHC multimer screening
  • Flow cytometry
  • Analyses of antigen-specific T cells
  • Multicolor flow cytometry
  • Apply analytical and statistical tools to identify patterns in large datasets
  • Analyses and visualization of data using R

The candidate should demonstrate evidence of self-driven and independent research capability, excellent collaboration and communication skills, an interest in working in an interdisciplinary research environment, and a strong motivation to succeed within a competitive research field.

You must have a two-year master’s degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master’s degree.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarships for the PhD degree are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see DTU’s rules for the PhD education.

We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Professor Sine Reker Hadrup, [email protected] or Associate Prof. Sunil Kumar Saini, [email protected].

You can read more about the DTU Health Tech at

If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark. Furthermore, you have the option of joining our monthly free seminar “PhD relocation to Denmark and startup “Zoom” seminar” for all questions regarding the practical matters of moving to Denmark and working as a PhD at DTU.

Application procedure
Your complete online application must be submitted no later than 8 January 2023 (Danish time). Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link “Apply now”, fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter) – Please indicate which project you are applying for
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma (in English) including official description of grading scale

Incomplete applications will not be considered. You may apply prior to ob­tai­ning your master’s degree but cannot begin before having received it.

Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.

Computer/Software Skills Required

Which language proficiency is required?

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Position Start Date