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PhD scholarship in microbial biotechnology and bioprospecting
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Friday 14 Jan 22
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Apply no later than 13 February 2022
Apply for the job at DTU Bioengineering by completing the following form.
If you are highly ambitious and passionate about science, and if you want to
pursue a PhD degree at the interface between biotechnology, molecular
microbial ecology, and engineering, we are offering a fully funded 3-year PhD
scholarship in the Molecular Microbial Ecology (MME) group at the Department
of Biotechnology and Biomedicine (DTU Bioengineering).
The ability to grow and manipulate microorganisms is the foundation of
microbial biotechnology, yet we have only exploited a miniscule fraction of
the microbial diversity on Earth as the vast majority of microorganisms in
nature are unctulturable through conventional methodology. This cultivation
barrier is a significant impediment to current bioprospecting efforts and its
circumvention is essential in order to ensure a continuous supply of
sustainable bio-based solutions to current and future challenges.
The scholarship is part of a project (EXPAND) funded by the Novo Nordisk
Foundation, which aims at improving the culturability of microorganisms from
nature through sophisticated microfluidic and fluorescence labelling
methodologies. With this PhD scholarship, you will have the opportunity to
break new ground in the pursuit for novel bacterial strains and the molecules
they produce through the development and implementation of forefront
Responsibilities and qualifications
The main objective of the PhD project will be to obtain yet-to-be-cultured
representatives of specific bacterial functional groups from environmental
microbiomes. As a means to that end, you will develop state-of-the-art in
situ fluorescence labelling methodology for tagging living bacterial cells in
environmental samples. You will verify the specificity and applicability of
the approach you develop using fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry
analyses. Furthermore, you will implement your labelling protocol in
combination with a microfluidic droplet sorting setup, ultimately obtaining
novel bacterial taxa with specific, predetermined functional traits.
The ideal candidate:
Is a passionate scientist with an intrinsic motivation to do excellent
Has documented experimental skills within molecular microbiology or
Preferably has experience with FISH methodology and flow cytometry
Is excited about miniaturization and automation
Has strong technical, organizational, and writing skills
The project involves collaboration with other scientists in academia and in
industry. It is essential that you have good communication skills in English
and you are interested in many aspects of science and its applications. You
should be able to work independently and contribute to a positive and
inspirational work atmosphere.
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 scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the
candidate 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.
The assessment of the applications will be made by Associate Professor Mikkel
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.
Expected starting date: April 2022 or as soon as possible hereafter.
Further information may be obtained from Associate Professor Mikkel Bentzon-
You can read more about DTU Bioengineering at www. bioengineering.dtu.dk/
If you are applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in
Denmark and at DTU at DTU – Moving to Denmark.
Your complete online application must be submitted no later than 13
February 2022 (Danish time).
Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to
be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", 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)
Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma including official description of
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.
All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability,
religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.
The Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine (DTU Bioengineering)
is an international leader in the areas of biotechnology and biomedicine. Our
engineering approach to all aspects of biotechnology and biomedicine positions
us as a valuable player with unique competences in a growing bio-based economy
and with health systems transforming towards personalized medicine. We have a
clear focus on the needs in the life science industry and point towards
innovation, new businesses, and scientific services for the benefit of
society. The department has extensive collaborations with national and
international research units and industry. DTU Bioengineering has approx. 300
employees, of which 2/3 are scientific staff. The department is located at DTU
Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and
study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the
global challenges formulated in the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and
create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision
lives on today. DTU has 12,900 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an
international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working
environment. DTU has campuses in all parts of Denmark and in Greenland, and we
collaborate with the best universities around the world.