University of Cambridge

Job Opportunities


PhD Studentship - Human intestinal epithelial cell biology in health and disease (Fixed Term)

Applications are invited for a fully funded 3-year PhD studentship under the joint supervision of Dr Matthias Zilbauer, Department of Paediatrics, University of Cambridge and Dr. Bon-Kyoung Koo, Wellcome Trust - Medical Research Council Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, Cambridge UK.

The project will focus on investigating human intestinal epithelial cell biology in health and disease such as Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD). One of the main methodological approaches will include the generation of mucosa derived human intestinal epithelial organoids as well as their genomic editing using CRISPR/Cas9. Additionally, genome wide epigenetic and transcriptomic profiling of organoids and primary patient derived gut epithelium will be performed.

The successful candidate will benefit from established methodologies, existing patient derived data/samples, and a strong network of world leading collaborators (e.g. Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI)). The student joining our group will become part of a dynamic and committed multi-disciplinary team that includes basic and clinician scientists, as well as a highly motivated clinical team, providing appropriate supervision in all aspects of the research. This will allow the student to acquire cutting edge research methodologies in a supportive environment, where they can focus on making the best possible scientific progress.

Our laboratory is situated at Addenbrookes Hospital in the heart of the Cambridge Biomedical Research Campus ( providing access to state of the art research facilities. As a graduate student at Cambridge you will have access to a wide range of training opportunities and benefit from close supervision provided by a primary and secondary PhD supervisor as well as a personal mentor.

In summary, this PhD program offers the unique opportunity to work at the interface of basic science and clinical medicine aiming to train independent, innovative scientists capable of perusing translational research using cutting edge technology. Training will include both laboratory based molecular biological methods as well as bioinformatic skills allowing analysis of large data sets.

The successful candidate is expected to have (or expect to obtain by the start date) at least an upper second-class honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject. The studentship will cover tuition and college fees as well as maintenance grant for EU nationals. Owing to funding restrictions, the studentship is not available to non-EU nationals.

To apply please provide the following information:

1) Detailed academic CV including exam marks and all relevant practice experience. 2) One-page statement on why you would like to pursue a PhD and what excites you about this project. 3) Names and email-addresses of at least two referees, who know you from your courses or laboratory research work.

Please send your application by email to (Clare Rice). If you are invited to proceed further then you will need to make a full application to the University of Cambridge. You can find details on how to do this on the Board of Graduate Studies website.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available until 30 September 2020 in the first instance.

The deadline for applications is 2nd July 2017. Informal enquires regarding this studentship may be made to Dr. Matthias Zilbauer, e-mail:

Interviews are likely to take place on 17th July 2017.

Please quote reference RP12154 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information