PhD Positions in Biochemistry
Uppsala University Department of Chemistry

Up to 2 PhD posotions in Biochemistry in the Innovative Training Network (ITN) UBIMOTIF


Uppsala University is a comprehensive research-intensive university with a strong international standing. Our mission is to pursue top-quality research and education and to interact constructively with society. Our most important assets are all the individuals whose curiosity and dedication make Uppsala University one of Sweden’s most exciting workplaces. Uppsala University has 44.000 students, 7.100 employees and a turnover of SEK 7 billion.


The department of Chemistry–BMC is located within Uppsala University Biomedical Center. We conduct teaching and outstanding research in areas of Analytical Chemistry, Biochemistry, Organic Chemistry and Physical Chemistry. Research education is given within these subjects. We have interfaces towards pre-clinical biomedicine and the clinic, pharmacy, physics and materials science. The department has over 100 employees, and of them around 30 PhD students and 10 Professors. 


You can find more information about us here.


We are looking for two PhD student in Biochemistry in the group of Dr. Ylva Ivarsson within the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 86051.


The UBIMOTIF consortium includes 13 research groups and 6 partners from 10 European countries and is a joint training and research program with focus on identification, characterization and exploitation of short linear motifs in the ubiquitin system. Visit for more information


Project description
The research in the Ivarsson lab aims to elucidate protein-protein interactions of relevance for cell signaling and function. Our main focus is on interactions between short linear motifs (3-12 amino acids, found in the intrinsically disordered regions of proteins) and motif-binding proteins. As a PhD student in the group you will chart motif-based protein-protein interactions of E3 ligases or deubiquitinases. You will bioinformatically analyze generated interactions and do in depth studies of selected interactions through biophysical and cell biological experiments. You will get the opportunity to do secondments to NZYtech (Portugal) & IBM Mainz (Germany), or Intavis (Germany) & University of Dundee (Scottland), and will thereby be exposed to different academic environments as well as direct experience of doing research within the context of a company.


We offer

  • The opportunity to conduct cutting-edge research and access to a network of leading researchers in the field

  • Participation in research-specific, complementary and soft skills training that involve both the academic and industry sectors.


Appointment period

The PhD position is for four years, extendable with department duties at a level of at most 20%, typically teaching. The time for employment can be prolonged if specific reasons exist.



As a PhD student in our team you will perform graduate studies within the subject and is expected to carry out advanced research in biochemistry and to broaden your perspective and knowledge of biochemistry by taking relevant graduate courses. The international and intersectoral secondments are obligatory requirements of the ITN.


Rules governing PhD candidates are set out in the Higher Education Ordinance Chapter 5, §§ 1-7 and in Uppsala University's rules and guidelines (for more information, see


PhD students with employment in our department are normally expected to teach and participate in general departmental work, such as instrument maintenance, to a level corresponding to a maximum of 20% of the employment time. You can read more about how it is to be a post graduate student with us here.



To qualify for a PhD position, you must have at least 240 credits (hp), or an equivalent basic university education, with at least 90 credits in chemistry and 60 credits at the advanced level in the specialization subject. For a PhD education in biochemistry the requirements are at least 45 credits in biochemistry, of which 15 credits should be thesis work. It is desired that you have a Master´s degree in Biochemistry or similar experience, and that you have experience of biochemical and biophysical methods, as well as previous experience of protein expression and purification.  It is of added value if you have experience of bioinformatics analysis and/or other biochemical, biophysical or cell biological methods.


The project is focused on protein-protein interaction studies and how these regulate cell function. It is therefore desired that you have a general interest in cell signaling and the protein-protein interactions that regulate cell signaling. An interest in bioinformatics and network analysis of biological data is of added value.


You must at the date of recruitment be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of your research career and not have been awarded a doctoral degree. Full-Time Equivalent Research Experience is measured from the date when the you obtained the degree entitling you to embark on a doctorate (even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged).


You must not have resided or carried out your main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Sweden  for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date. Compulsory national service, short stays such as holidays, and time spent as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status are not taken into account.


Being a PhD student in an ITN includes a considerable amount of travelling including participation in meetings and workshops and stays of periods of a few months outside the host laboratory. Therefore, a requirement is the willingness to travel and stay abroad.


We place great emphasis on your personal qualifications. You need to have a strong motivation for the research project and to be able to contribute with creative ideas. This project requires that you are able to work independently, but that you also have excellent collaborative skills as you will collaborate with different people both inside and outside our university.


Applicants must have an ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English to a level that is sufficiently high for them to derive the full benefit from the network training.


To be employed as a PhD student, you must be accepted in the postgraduate program. Information concerning doctoral education, requirements and rules of admission can be found here,  the study plan for postgraduate studies in biochemistry can be found here.


Criteria for ranking

The ranking of applicants will be based on undergraduate grades, on the undergraduate education profile and on any additional experience of research in areas of relevance for the research project. Such additional experience should be demonstrated and included in your application, e.g. through articles published in international peer-reviewed journals or by employment at companies or other institutions active in the field of research. High emphasis will also be put on personal qualifications required for the project.


In filling this position, we aim to recruit the person who, in a combined evaluation of competence, skills and documented qualifications and are judged most suitable to carry out and develop the project-in-hand. Interviews will be performed with the top candidates through visits to us or by electronic means.


Your application

Your application must include a personal letter with a short description of yourself and the reasons why you are interested in the position. You must also include a CV, copies of degrees and diplomas, copies of your bachelor or master thesis and other documents, such as publications, that you want to provide. Names and contact details of at least two scientists that have offered to act as references for you must also be included, with a clear indication of their relationship to you.


Uppsala University strives to be an inclusive workplace that promotes equal opportunities and attracts qualified candidates who can contribute to the University’s excellence and diversity. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and from people of all backgrounds.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 860517.


Salary: According to local agreement for PhD students.
Starting date: The earliest possible recruitment date is 1 March 2020.

Type of employment: Temporary position according to the Higher Education Ordinance chapter 5 § 7.

Scope of employment: 100 %

For further information about the position please contact: Ylva Ivarsson (

Please submit your application by 3 January 2020, UFV-PA 2019/3686.

Are you considering moving to Sweden to work at Uppsala University? If so, you will find a lot of information about working and living in Sweden at You are also welcome to contact International Faculty and Staff Services at


Please do not send offers of recruitment or advertising services. Applications must be submitted as described in this advertisement.

Placement: Department of Chemistry - BMC

Type of employment: Full time , Temporary position longer than 6 months

Pay: Fixed salary

Number of positions: 2

Working hours: 100 %

Town: Uppsala

County: Uppsala län

Country: Sweden

Union representative: Seko Universitetsklubben

Number of reference: UFV-PA 2019/3686

Last application date: 2020-01-03

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Bioloxy


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