PhD Position, Role of cell density in the regulation of cancer cell plasticity

Job Details
Closing Date: 2020-09-01
Institution: University of Regensburg
Term: 3 years
Keyword Names: PhD / Graduate Studentship, Cancer/Oncology
Line 1: University of Regensburg
City: Regensburg
Country: Germany

Job Description

PhD Position, Role of cell density in the regulation of cancer cell plasticity, University of Regensburg, Germany

The research group "Signaling pathways in metastasis" (Dr. Heda Hosseini), part of the Chair of Experimental Medicine and Therapy Research (Head: Prof. Dr. Christoph Klein), Faculty of Medicine, University of Regensburg, Germany, is looking for a highly motivated PhD student (f/m). The position is available from November 2020 and is initially limited to 3 years (with a possibility for extension). The salary will be based on TV-L/E13.

Project description:

We have recently found that cell density regulates the migration and proliferation phenotypes of breast cancer cells (Hosseini et al., Nature 2016). The high cellular density induces cell proliferation and decreases the stemness and migration properties of cancer cells. In contrast, low cellular density decreases cell proliferation and induces the stemness and migration of cancer cells. In this study, we aim to investigate the mechanism of cellular density regulation of cancer cell-plasticity.

The project will involve the following techniques:

  1. Molecular biology: Cell invasion/migration assays, cell proliferation assays, Western blotting, co-Immunoprecipitation (Co-IP), CRISPR/Cas9, Gene manipulation using viral transduction method, siRNA knock down experiments, PCR, qPCR, RNA–seq and protein mass spectrometry. 
  2. Cell culture experiments: Normal and primary cell culture, live imaging and screening, and 3D culture.
  3. Microscopic experiments: Immunohistochemistry/immunofluorescence staining and imaging.
  4. In vivo experiments: Working with BALB/c and Balb-NeuT mouse models, breeding and genotyping, transplantation, organ isolating and archiving.

What we offer:

  • Expert training for all required methods
  • Registration in the international graduate school 
  • Participation in two summer schools
  • Supervising support during all your project
  • International environment
  • Good scientific practice
  • Authorship in all publications that come out from the project
  • The successful candidate will be involved into one of the graduate schools at the University of Regensburg (RIGeL, BIOMEDIGS).

Successful candidate:

  • Graduated recently with an excellent grade from a MSc/Diplom (a) degree (or equivalent) program related to molecular biology (Biology or Biochemistry with major/focus/thesis in molecular biology, molecular medicine, or similar) and has a passion for cancer research
  • Is a team-player, who can also work on their own, with experience in using techniques and methods of molecular biology (mammalian cell culture, PCR, western blot, microscopy, etc.); knowledge of advanced methods (CRISPR/Cas, Lentiviral transduction, 3D cultures, etc.) is a plus
  • Is fluent in English, and has excellent oral and written scientific communication skills. Fluency in German is a plus

The successful candidate will be involved into one of the graduate schools at the University of Regensburg (RIGeL, BIOMEDIGS).

For further information and application, contact Dr. Heda Hosseini (

Please send your (1) CV indicating your expertise and skills, (2) transcripts of studies records, (3) the names of two referees, and a (4) motivation letter stating why are you interested in this particular topic and what makes you the right candidate, to If possible, please also send an electronic version of your MSc thesis or a recent publication which you co-authored. Potential candidates will be contacted for in-person interview.