PhD Position in System Medicine Modelling and Machine Learning of COPD Disease

Trondheim, Norway
06 Apr 2018
End of advertisement period
24 Apr 2018
Contract Type
Full Time

A PhD Research Fellow position within Systems medicine modelling is available at the Department of Chemical Engineering. The appointment has a duration of 3 years with the possibility of until 1 year extension with 25% teaching duties in agreement with the department. The position is financed by the EU (ERA MedSys, H2020).

Information about the department

The current research fields at the Department includes catalysis, colloid and polymer chemistry, environmental engineering and reactor technology and process systems engineering. Information about the department is available at:


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) claimed 3.2 million lives in 2015, making it the third cause of death worldwide and it is predicted to increase in coming years. Existing assessment strategies ignore the complex and multi-component pathophysiology and are unsuccessful in diagnostic and treatment of COPD. The main aim the project is to develop a tool that will enable effective preventive measures and personalize treatment strategies for COPD by means of systems medicine.

Systems medicine is often perceived as the combination between Systems engineering and systems biology, and considers complex interactions within the human body in light of a patient's genomics, behavior and environment. An important topic in systems medicine is the development of computational models that describe disease progression and the effect of therapeutic interventions.

We seek hard-working, creative persons for our new European project “Sysmed-COPD”. The applicant will construct Systems medicine model of COPD pathophysiology based on a large dataset (over 5000 patients).

The applicant will develop mechanistic mathematical models that project probable outcomes (prognosis and treatments) based on existing symptoms and diagnostics to refine and validate them in an iterative approach with laboratory experiments (RNA-seq and metabolomics). The applicant will use blood RNA-seq and metabolomics (serum, LC/MS) data from selected clusters to develop mechanistic sub-models describing changes of variables with time. Part of the modeling will incorporate machine learning techniques.

Detailed information on our PhD programs is found at:


The applicant must have an MSc in Systems medicine, chemical engineering, Systems biology, Bioinformatics, applied mathematics, or equivalent. The candidate should be proficient with documented (courses or master thesis/project work) experience in at least one of the following:

  • mathematical modelling 
  • bioinformatics
  • machine learning

The regulations for PhD program at NTNU state that a Master degree or equivalent with at least 5 years of studies is required. Further requirements are an average grade of A or B for the two last years of the MSc program (within a scale of A-E for passing grades where A is best). Candidates from universities outside Norway are kindly requested to send a Diploma Supplement or a similar document, which describes in detail the study and grade system and the rights for further studies associated with the obtained degree:

The position requires spoken and written fluency in the English language. It will be considered an advantage to also master spoken and written Norwegian.

We prefer to start the position during June - August 2018, but we will consider other options from excellent candidates.

Terms of employment

The appointment of the PhD fellows will be made according to Norwegian guidelines for universities and university colleges and to the general regulations regarding university employees. Applicants must agree to participate in organized doctoral study programs within the period of the appointment and have to be qualified for the PhD-study.

NTNU’s personnel policy objective is that the staff must reflect the composition of the population to the greatest possible extent.

The position as PhD is remunerated according to the Norwegian State salary scale. There is a 2% deduction for superannuation contribution.

For more details send email to Professor Nadav Bar,, or call +47 46664743.

The application

Applications with CV, certificates from both Bachelor and Master, possible publications and other scientific works, copies of transcripts, (copies of documentation on English language proficiency test) and reference letters should be submitted.

Applications must be submitted electronically through this page. 
Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered.

The reference number of the position is: NV-53/18

Application deadline: 24.04.2018


  • Deadline Tuesday, April 24, 2018
  • Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  • Website
  • Municipality Trondheim
  • Place of service Gløshaugen
  • Jobbnorge ID 150751
  • Internal ID 2018/10633
  • Scope Fulltime
  • Duration Temporary


  • Applications on this job are registered in an electronic form on
  • You must complete: Standard CV
  • Please refer to where you first saw this job advertised!