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PhD Research Fellow in Biomarker Discovery

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  • Full or part time
    Prof G Alves
    Dr Jodi Maple-Grødem
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

The University of Stavanger invites applicants for PhD fellowships in Biomedicine as part of the GCase-Responders Across Neurodegenerative Diseases (the GRAND project):

GRAND is a multidisciplinary project to develop precision medicine for Parkinson’s disease (PD) and Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB).
During their lives, one of three of Norway’s residents will be affected by diseases and conditions that either temporarily or chronically affect brain health. PD and DLB are progressive, debilitating neurodegenerative disorders collectively referred to as α-synucleinopathies. Together these diseases affect more than 10,000 people in Norway and 10 million people globally, and as the world’s population grows older, these figures are projected to at least double in the next 20 years. There is an unmet clinical need to treat neurodegenerative diseases and to minimise the burden of disability and deaths owing to α-synucleinopathies. Accordingly, research into the causes and mechanisms underlying PD and DLB are a priority research area.

In the GRAND project, each PhD fellow will perform independent but highly complementary work packages to study the effects of GCase dysfunction in patients with PD and DLB. By applying methods from different disciplines to the same individuals, we will gain a unique insight into where, when and why neurodegeneration is occurring in these diseases. The data generated by each project will also be combined and a powerful machine learning approach applied to build an artificial intelligence (AI) application for precision medicine. This will move the field beyond the state of the art for clinical trial design. Up to two PhD fellowships are available in the GRAND project. See our announcement for information on the connected Neuroimaging / Machine learning project.

Position 1. PhD Research Fellow in Biomarker Discovery
The foundation of this project is the detailed characterisation of large numbers of participants through regular clinical evaluation with a standardized battery of motor and non-motor scales. The candidate will analyse this data to determine baseline and demographic risk factors associated with disease prognosis in PD and DLB. Further, the candidate will study the impact of genetic variation on the progression of disease in the two groups and will use advanced molecular methods to measure candidate protein biomarkers in patient samples. These data will be combined to determine the clinical and biological markers associated with GCase dysfunction and the unique “molecular signatures” associated with poor disease outcomes.

Full details on the project and how to apply are available at the university job website:

Funding Notes

The Faculty of Health Sciences and The Faculty of Sciences and Technology have been assigned strategic recruitment positions related to medical initiatives, to strengthen the medical focus in collaboration with Stavanger University Hospital. The appointment is for three years in a 100% research position, or four years with 75% research education and 25% compulsory work, or in a part-time course with at least 50% research education per year. This will be clarified in the recruitment process.

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