PhD Student to Experimentally Study Cell Cycle Dynamics KU Leuven Laboratory of Dynamics in Biological Systems Belgium


The Laboratory of Dynamics in Biological Systems at the KU Leuven aims at understanding how networks of interacting genes, RNAs, and proteins can collectively regulate biological processes in space and time. Our present focus lies on the coordination of cell division. We combine a theoretical approach; such as computational modeling, and theory of complex systems and nonlinear dynamics; with molecular and cellular experiments using Xenopus frogs, zebrafish, and cell cultures. For more information, see



The cell cycle is an essential process in all animals, and defects in this process can lead to devastating diseases such as cancer. In this project, the student will study the regulation of the cell cycle in early frog embryos and cell-free extracts. He/she will learn how to make such cell-free extracts from frog eggs that allow us to decouple the biochemical cellular processes from the actual cell, thus allowing us to create an artificial cellular environment in a test-tube. The student will analyze the dynamics of these extracts using time-lapse fluorescence imaging in microfluidic devices. Additionally, he/she will also study dynamical aspects of cell cycle regulation using fluorescent reporters in various cell lines in culture. 


The student will interact synergistically with experimentalists, theorists and engineers. Such an interdisciplinary approach will lead to new insights into how the most fundamental processes, such as mitosis, are regulated in space and time.


The position is available immediately and applications will be considered until the position is filled.


  • You have (or are near completion of) a MSc degree in biology, (bio)chemistry or (bio-) engineering
  • You are ambitious, motivated, creative, organized, practically skillful and result-oriented
  • You can work independently as well as in a team
  • You have good communication skills and a good knowledge of English, both spoken and written
  • You have experience in biochemistry and molecular biology
  • You have a strong interest in the cell cycle and dynamical systems biology



We offer a doctoral position in a stimulating, interdisciplinary environment and scientific development opportunities in an international and dynamic team. You will have access to state-of-the-art research facilities and will be registered in a specific program of the doctoral school. You will be supervised by well-trained scientists and receive thorough training in conducting research, presentations and writing.



For more information please contact Prof. dr. Lendert Gelens, tel.: +32 16 37 42 88, mail:

To apply, please submit as soon as possible your motivation letter, CV,copies of transcripts/MSc degree, and names and contact information of at leasttwo references.


You can apply for this job no later than April 15, 2019 via the online application tool

KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at

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