Ph.D Student (f/m/x)


The University of Cologne offers a wide range of scientific disciplines and internationally leading profile areas organized in six faculties. At the Faculty of Medicine 1.800 scientists are engaged in research, ranging from basic sciences to clinical application, as well as teaching and health care. Together with the University Hospital Cologne the faculty maintains 58 clinics, research institutes and centres. 3.400 students study in this dynamic and innovative environment. The Faculty of Medicine and the University Hospital Cologne are embedded in the scientifically highly active Rhine region. They have strong contacts to and alliances with the surrounding universities and non-university research institutions guaranteeing scientific excellence in research and teaching.


The DFG funded collaborative research initiative (SFB TRR259) „Aortic Disease“ of the Department of Cardiology at the University of Cologne is seeking applications for two

PhD. Student (f/m/x) Positions


to be employed under a limited-time contract of 3 years (third party funded) for 25h/week (65%).


The 15 projects within the TRR/SFB 259 aim to address the underlying resident and non-resident molecular and cellular mechanisms of aortic disease, with a particular focus on aortic valve stenosis, aortic aneurysm, and aortic dissection. To date, the only treatments available for aortic disease have been surgical, invasive, and reactionary, thus, earlier indicators of disease are desperately needed. With this in mind, projects were selected for this consortium to collaboratively address the following fundamental questions:

1) What are the key cellular players in the innate and adaptive immune processes that are involved in aortic disease?

2) Which danger signals, mediators, and cytokines govern the pathological interaction between circulating cells and resident cells?

3) Which specific signaling pathways in interstitial smooth muscle cells drive aortic disease?

4) How do resident cell death pathways influence aortic wall inflammation and extracellular matrix composition?


The successful candidate will join a dynamic research lab and will participate in the analysis of molecular and immunological mechanisms regulating vascular remodelling and aneurysm formation in Marfan’s Disease. In the particular project we are focusing on Marfan Syndrome, an autosomal-dominant hereditary connective-tissue disorder caused by a mutation in the fibrillin-1 gene (Fbn1) and the modulation of the elastic-fiber scaffold of the vessel wall leading subsequently to aneurysm formation.


We offer a stimulating scientific environment (CECAD, CMMC, CCCRC), the lab has numerous national and international collaborations, excellent supervision and the position offers the participation in the Graduate School for Biological Sciences, University Cologne (gs-biosciences). Applicants will have access to cutting-edge technology and the opportunity for collaborations in an excellent scientific setting within and beyond the SFB TRR259. Methods that will be used: molecular biology, immunofluorescence, imaging, transgenic mouse models and cell lines, biochemistry, cell biology, high-modality flow cytometry, bulk and single cell RNA sequencing.


Applications are invited from candidates who recently obtained their Diploma/Master’s degree. The applicant should have a strong background in molecular biology and enthusiasm to study basic mechanisms of disease processes. Applicants should also be interested in immunological research and have basic knowledge of immunology. The successful candidate will be actively involved in mouse work and previous experience is desirable, but not mandatory. Experience is bioinformatic analysis of sequencing data is a plus.


Your salary will be based on TV-L.


Applications from female candidates are expressly welcome and will be given priority in the event of equal suitability, competence and professional performance.


People with disabilities are welcome to apply and will be treated preferentially in the event of equal suitability and qualification.


Further information is available on the internet at here.

Please address telephone enquiries to Dr. Martin Mollenhauer at +49 221 478-87402.

Have we awakened your interest? Please submit your application (including a detailed CV, list of publications, two references and a brief statement of research interests). If so, please send your informative and full application using the online form on our "Careers" site by 28. Febuary 2020.


We prefer online applications as they accelerate the application process.


If applying on-line should not be feasible for you, obviously, you can send in your application by surface mail. In that case please address your application to:


Uniklinik Köln
Geschäftsbereich Personal
Number of job posting: V00001515
50924 Köln