Ghent University

PhD Student - Department of Biomolecular Medicine

2023-09-30 (Europe/Brussels)
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About the employer

Ghent University is one of the top 100 universities in the Dutch language area, with more than 44,000 students and 15,000 staff members.

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Last application date Sep 30, 2023 00:00

Department GE31 - Department of Biomolecular Medicine

Contract Limited duration

Degree Master’s degree in Medicine, Biomedical Sciences, Biotechnology, Bioengineering, Pharmaceutical sciences, or equivalent

Occupancy rate 100%

Vacancy type Research staff

Job description

Within the framework of an FWO funded project, the PhD student will investigate the possible use of gene editing in the mouse and human germline to correct abnormal DNA sequences during fertilization. After application of classical CRISPR/Cas9 in mouse and human embryos, the chromosomal constitution is sometimes severely affected, leading to loss of heterozygosity, which is the (partial) loss of the chromosomal contribution of both parents to the cell. The origin of this loss of heterozygosity is however still under investigation, but it has already been hypothesized that DNA breaks generated by the CRISPR/Cas9 technology catalyze this phenomenon. For these reasons, alternative CRISPR/Cas9 methods for DNA mutational repair that function without the generation of DNA breaks (base and prime editing), which are currently almost unexplored in embryos, are of interest. In this research, both the classical and alternative CRISPR/Cas9 methods will be directly compared in terms of efficiency and safety in mouse and human embryos and/or stem cells, aiming for the correction of mutations leading to genetic diseases. The PhD position is available in the research group of prof. Björn Menten at the Center for Medical Genetics Ghent, in collaboration with the Ghent-Fertility And Stem cell Team coordinated by prof. Björn Heindryckx.

  • Biomedical research (coordinating and performing) in preparation of a PhD thesis.
  • Write, present and publish scientific research work in English to obtain the requirements for a PhD thesis.
  • Contribute to the daily activities of the research group.

Our lab offers the opportunity to work in a dynamic and multidisciplinary academic research environment with close interaction between clinicians and basic scientists and with (inter)national collaborations. Research stays abroad and attendances at international conferences are encouraged. The candidate will follow a PhD trajectory at Ghent University, which offers ample opportunities for education and training through the doctoral schools program.

Job profile

  • You have a strong interest in genetics and molecular biology and are prepared to acquire new techniques.
  • Prior experience with (stem) cell culture, PCR, cloning, next generation sequencing and data-analysis is considered an advantage.
  • You take initiative, have a critical mindset and you strive to work independently.
  • You are highly motivated and are flexible team player.
  • You have excellent oral and written communication skills and have a good knowledge of English.
  • You work in an organized manner with good reporting skills.
  • You have (or are willing to obtain) a FELASA C certificate to work with laboratory animals.
  • Candidates who are eligible to submit a PhD research project to other funding agencies is considered as an advantage.

We offer a position for a duration of 4 years (1 + 3)

How to apply

Send a motivation letter and curriculum vitae with detailed study results (per year) to Prof. dr. ir. Björn Menten (Email:
Please also include extracurricular activities and the contact information of two references.

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Job details

PhD Student - Department of Biomolecular Medicine
Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat 33 Ghent, Belgium
Application deadline
2023-09-30 23:59 (Europe/Brussels)
2023-09-30 23:59 (CET)
Job type
Save job

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About the employer

Ghent University is one of the top 100 universities in the Dutch language area, with more than 44,000 students and 15,000 staff members.

Visit the employer page

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