Doctoral (PhD) student position in allergy and asthma research

Stockholm (SE)
11 Nov 2020
End of advertisement period
26 Nov 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Doctoral (PhD) student position in allergy and asthma research

Do you want to contribute to improving human health?

To be a doctoral student means to devote oneself to a research project under supervision of experienced researchers and following an individual study plan. For a doctoral degree, the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral education is required. 

The research group

The Department of Clinical Science and Education, Södersjukhuset, pursues undergraduate education, research education and internationally recognized research focusing on common diseases and injuries. The goal of all activities is to improve human health.

“Group Melén” is led by professor Erik Melén, pediatric allergist and genetic epidemiologist. Our research is focused on advancing knowledge about disease etiology and prognosis using a translational approach; from genetics, immunology and mechanisms to environmental and lifestyle factors. Clinically, the group has a major focus on asthma, allergies and lung function. Molecular biomarkers and immune phenotyping methods are used to assess interactions between environmental and hereditary factors, as well as to better characterize environmental exposure and health effects. Many projects are conducted in international collaboration.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

This project proposal aims at identifying relevant biomarkers and immune cell profiles that characterize various types of asthma in early adulthood. Asthma is a common disease affecting around 10% of the population. Asthma is comprised of several different endotypes and manifests as different phenotypes. However, the underlying immune phenotypes associated with these clinical phenotypes are not well studied, and there is an unmet need to identify useful biomarkers that can guide follow-up programs and tailor treatment. The projects in this doctoral program are primarily funded by the ERC, European Research Council (grant No 757919, TRIBAL) and will be conducted within our on-going population-based birth cohort BAMSE ( Replication attempts, when applicable, will be done in independent cohorts.

The PhD-student will take the leading role in performing statistical data analyses and summarizing clinical and immunological data in the project. The student will also participate in data collection, which involves contact with study participants, and in the immunology lab data analysis process (i.e. wet lab work).

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:

  • have been awarded a second-cycle/advanced/master qualification (i.e. master degree) or
  • 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
  • have acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.*

Follow the instructions on the web page

*If you claim equivalent knowledge, follow the instructions on the web page 

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 

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 person who is committed to research. The candidate should have an interest in asthma, allergy, immunology and genetics research. Prior experience within asthma and allergy research is considered an advantage for this project. Authorship on research articles is also highly meriting, as is previous training in research laboratories. Methods used in the study include advanced epidemiology and biostatistics, bioinformatics using large-scale data, as well as cellular and molecular techniques. Experience in these methods is desirable.

The following qualifications will be especially valued: 

- A degree (or ongoing studies) in medicine or biomedicine

- Experience in large-scale data analyses

- Experience in immunology analyses

- Experience working with statistical programs such as STATA, R etc

-Very good knowledge in the English language, written and spoken. - Good knowledge in Swedish (communication with study participants desired)

Terms and conditions

The doctoral student will be employed on a doctoral studentship 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.

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

Further information

Group Melén:

The BAMSE project: