PhD Scholarship in Medical Science Stromal Immunology

Outstanding international students are invited to apply for a PhD scholarship in medical sciences at University of Gothenburg. The funds for this fellowship are available for four years. Applications should be sent before December 03, 2019.

At the department of Rheumatology and Inflammation Research, Inflammation is the main topic of the research conducted within the department. Our research groups perform studies of inflammatory diseases, whether caused by allergy, infection, or autoimmune disease. The goal is to investigate the mechanisms underlying the body’s tissues become inflamed.Many of our researchers are also working as a specialist physician at the clinic at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, which is also one of our greatest assets.

Project title: Role of stromal cells for the effects of estrogen on immune responses in arthritis

The PhD educationin Medical Science comprisecarrying out a scientific project and completing at least 30 credits of courses at third-cycle level. The doctoral student must also write a scientific compilation thesis or monograph corresponding to at least 120 credits. For more information about third-cycle studies at Sahlgrenska Academy, see

Project: The goal of this PhD project is to clarify the involvement of lymph node stromal cells in the anti-inflammatory effects of estrogen (17beta-estradiol) in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The peak incidence of RA in women coincides with the time of menopause, and early menopause is an independent predictor of developing RA. Treatment with estrogen reduces both inflammation and bone erosions in RA, but unfortunately, estrogen treatment is strongly discouraged due to severe side effects including cancer. The mechanisms involved in the anti-inflammatory effects of estrogen in RA are unclear, and defining them would provide opportunities to develop new and better RA therapies free from unwanted side effects associated with estrogen treatment.

T cells that can produce the protein IL-17 (Th17 cells) are involved in the pathogenesis of arthritis. They increase joint inflammation and stimulates the developmentof osteoclasts, a cell that breaks down the skeleton. Studies from our group have shown that estrogen-mediated inhibition of experimental arthritis is associated with reduced exit of Th17 cells from lymph nodes and migration into the joints. However, the specific mechanism involved in this effect is still unclear. Fibroblastic reticular cells (FRC) are mesenchymal stromal cells that are essential for the formation of the three-dimensional network on which leukocytes migrate and interact in lymph nodes. Also, it has been shown that FRC can control the function and migration of T cells in lymph nodes. In this PhD project we will determine if estrogen can regulate the function of FRC, and also test the hypothesis that estrogen inhibits the exit of Th17 cells from lymph nodes via effects on FRC. Both in vivo models and in vitro techniques will be used in the project. Information from these studies may have significant implications for a number of inflammatory conditions and also contribute to the development of new treatment options for arthritis and osteoporosis. Third-cycle studies are equivalent to four year full-time and lead to a Degree of Doctor. Those appointed to doctoral studentships shall primarily devote themselves to their studies. Those appointed to doctoral studentships may, however, work to a limited extent with educational tasks, research and administration (departmental duties). Before a PhD degree has been awarded,duties of this kind may not comprise more than 20 per cent of a full-time post.

To be eligible for third-cycle studies, the applicant must meet both the general and specific entry requirements.

for third-cycle studiesif he or she:

1. has been awarded a second-cycle qualification 2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second-cycle, or 3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad for third-cycle studiesin Medical Science if he or she: has successfully completed the English B/6 course or is considered to have acquired equivalent knowledge through previous studies

In selecting between applicants who meet the general and specific entry requirements, their ability to benefit from third-cycle studies shall be taken into account. The assessment shall attach particular importance to documented qualifications for:

– specific knowledge and skills within the subject area and related research fields – experience of scientific theory and relevant research methodology – scientific analysis and presentation verified through thesis, degree project, scientific journals or the like. After admission tothird-cyclestudies you will be appointedtodoctoral studentship. Regulations for employment of doctoral students are given in SFS 1993:100. The initial appointment may apply for no longer than one year. An appointment may be renewed for no more than two years at a time. A person may beappointed to a doctoral studentship for a total ofeight years. The total employment period may, however, not exceed the time corresponding to full-time third-cycle study for four years.

Location: Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Medicine, Department of Rheumatology and Inflammation Research.Extent:100%. First day of employment: as agreed.

Salaries for doctoral students are regulated in a local agreement at the University.

Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg:

In order to apply for a position at the University of Gothenburg, you have to register an account in our online recruitment system. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the job advertisement, and that it is submitted before the deadline.

You must include the following, in pdf format

If your degree is from a university outside of Sweden, check what you need to submit at where you can also see what you need to submit in order to fulfill the English language requirement.

The University of Gothenburg promotes equal opportunities, equality and diversity.

Applications will be destroyed or returned (upon request) two years after the decision of employment has become final. Applications from the employed and from those who appeal the decision will not be returned.


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