PhD Studentship Computational Biology and Machine Learning in Disease Mechanisms

University of Cambridge, UK is offering PhD position in computational biology. The funds for this fellowship are available for three years. Applications are welcome before January 24, 2020.

Applicants are invited for a PhD studentship at the University of Cambridge, to be jointly supervised by Dr Namshik Han (Head of Computational Biology at the Milner Therapeutics Institute) and Dr Kourosh Saeb-Parsy (Department of Surgery). Dr Saeb-Parsy ( leads an in vitro and in vivo experimental biology programme focused on the function and immunogenicity of cells, tissues and tumours. Dr Han’s ( group is focused on the development and application of machine learning, statistical and mathematical approaches to reveal genetic signatures of disease and target discovery, strongly focusing on the use of publicly available large-scale genetic datasets including patient cohort studies. The aim of the PhD project is to apply computational biology and machine learning to metabolomic, transcriptomic and proteomic experimental data generated by the Saeb-Parsy laboratory for uncovering of novel disease mechanisms and targets. Based on the candidate’s background and interests, the studentship could focus on one or both of the following areas: 1) The safety and efficacy of cancer immunotherapies. This project would utilise a bioinformatics approach to compare the immune response of normal and tumour human organoids transplanted into mice (reconstituted with a human immune compartment,) during immunotherapy. 2) The metabolic changes underlying ischaemia-reperfusion (IR) injury. This project would utilise a bioinformatics approach to compare the metabolic changes during cold and warm ischaemia in mouse, pig and human organs, as well as examining the efficacy of mitochondria-targeted therapeutics in reducing IR injury.

The ideal candidate would have an exceptional enthusiasm for bioinformatics, as well as a strong interest in the underlying biological processes and disease mechanisms. It is expected that the selected candidate would spend time in the Saeb-Parsy lab to gain a detailed working knowledge of the aims, hypotheses and design of the experimental programme, while applying state-of-the-art bioinformatics approaches in the Han lab to analyse the resulting data. It is expected that analysis of existing pilot data would lead to hypothesis generation for subsequent testing in experimental models as part of as iterative computational-experimental biology loop.

Further information about the studentship can be obtained from Dr Han ( or Dr Saeb-Parsy (

Candidates should have a first or upper second-class degree in a relevant subject. Candidates must meet the University of Cambridge entrance requirements: see The studentship has a stipend of 14,500 per year for three years. Only UK/EU level University fees are covered: other applicants will need to secure additional funding for overseas student fees.

Please e-mail your application to Alison Warrington (, enclosing a covering letter, detailed Curriculum vitae and the name and contact details of two academic referees. If you are invited to proceed further, you will need to make a full application to the University of Cambridge. Further details on Graduate Admissions are available at

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.


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