PhD Scholarship in Medical Science Familial Aggregation of Gestational Duration

University of Gothenburg, Sweden is inviting excellent students to apply for a PhD position in medical sciences. This position is available for four years. Applications are invited up to May 26, 2020.

The PhD education in Medical Science comprises carrying 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: Preterm delivery, defined as delivery before 37th completed weeks of gestation, is the leading cause of perinatal mortality worldwide. While medical progress has improved the survival of preterm born babies, we still lack effective strategies preventing preterm delivery. The main obstacle is a vague understanding of the biological mechanisms involved in preterm parturition. Heritability analysis provided the evidence for genetic contribution to population variability, and gave promises for successful genetic-variant identification. However, findings of genetic analyses have not provided a complete explanation for preterm delivery aetiology. The dissonance between the evidence of heritability and genetic studies has been enclosed under the term of missing heritability.

This project aims to provide insights about the contribution of genetic factors to pregnancy (pregnancy scholarships) duration, and consequently contribute to the debate on missing heritability. An alternative to heritability analysis, are the analysis of family aggregation, which might provide insights about possible mode of inheritance. Here, we propose to study the relationship between the duration of gestation within the pregnancies of a mother. The contribution of primiparity, interpregnancy interval, parental gestational ages at birth, on this relationship will be considered. We plan to find optimal models to the nature of our data and the outlined problem. The project is based on the Swedish Medical Birth Registry (MBR) covering the years 1973- 2012, and has the corresponding ethical approval for population-based studies related to heredity of preterm delivery. This project will ultimately lead to new concepts to improve power in genetic analysis of gestational duration, and may provide clinical benefits by better understanding the disparities between the duration of consecutive pregnancies. 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.

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 (fully funded Sweden scholarships) or abroad for third-cycle studies in 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 to third-cycle studies you will be appointed to doctoral 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 be appointed to a doctoral studentship for a total of eight 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 Clinical Sciences, Department of Obstetrics (Obstetrics scholarships) and Gynecology. Extent: 100%. First day of employment: as agreed.

Bo Jacobsson, Professor, Institute of Clinical Sciences, e-mail: Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg:

Choosing a career in a foreign country is a big step. Thus, to give you a general idea of what we and Gothenburg have to offer in terms of benefits and life in general for you and your family/spouse/partner please visit:

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.

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.

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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