Doctoral Student in Medical Science in Modelling Toxicity following Radiation Therapy

University of Gothenburg Institute of Clinical Sciences


Doctoral Student in Medical Science in Modelling Toxicity following Radiation Therapy


Diary id:PAR 2020/855

Employment level:Fixed term

Location:Institute of Clinical Sciences

Apply by:2020-08-06

Job assignments

The PhD education in Medical Science comprises carrying out a scientific project and completing at least 30 credits of courses at third-cycle level. The doctoral student must also write a scientific compilation thesis or monograph corresponding to at least 120 credits. For more information about third-cycle studies at Sahlgrenska Academy, see

Project: In radiation therapy (RT) of malignant disease, the goal is to create treatment plans that are optimal risk-benefit balances between the chance of tumor eradication and the risk of toxicity in surrounding healthy tissue. To achieve this balance, it is therefore necessary to know the mathematical/statistical relationships between the absorbed (radiation) dose distribution in healthy organs and the risk of normal-tissue toxicity originating from those organs. These relationships are called dose-response relationships and are determined by studying treated patients. 

This project aims to develop automatic methods to enable large-scale investigations of treatment-related effects following RT. The focus of method development will be on to create a workflow to retrospectively segment (anatomically define) organs in large patient cohorts in a time-efficient manner. The developed methods will be implemented to investigate the impact of radiation dose in the thorax on the risk of early mortality in patients treated with RT for non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).  

The research project will be carried out in the following tasks. First, various methods for automatic segmentation will be investigated for accuracy, precision and suitability for large-scale application. Automatic methods for quality assessment of the result will also be developed. The method development will to a large extent carried out by writing computer code in the programming language C#. Computer simulations will be used to investigate how precise the segmentation must be to not substantially impact the accuracy of the resulting dose-risk relationships. These simulations are preferably done in Matlab and/or R. The developed segmentation method will then be implemented and further evaluated in our local clinical dataset consisting of 700 patients. Once all anatomical organs of interest have been segmented, multivariabel logistic regression analysis will be used to investigate how the risk of early mortality is impacted by the dose distribution in the segmented organs as well as by relevant patient- and disease-related factors.

Third-cycle studies are equivalent to four year full-time and lead to a Degree of Doctor. Those appointed to doctoral studentships shall primarily devote themselves to their studies. Those appointed to doctoral studentships may, however, work to a limited extent with educational tasks, research and administration (departmental duties). Before a PhD degree has been awarded, duties of this kind may not comprise more than 20 per cent of a full-time post.


To be eligible for third-cycle studies, the applicant must meet both the general and specific entry requirements.

A person meets the general entry requirements for third-cycle studies if he or she:
1. has been awarded a second-cycle qualification
2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second-cycle, or
3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad

A person meets the specific entry requirements for third-cycle studies in Medical Science if he or she: has successfully completed the English B/6 course or is considered to have acquired equivalent knowledge through previous studies


In selecting between applicants who meet the general and specific entry requirements, their ability to benefit from third-cycle studies shall be taken into account. The assessment shall attach particular importance to documented qualifications for:

- specific knowledge and skills within the subject area and related research fields
- experience of scientific theory and relevant research methodology
- scientific analysis and presentation verified through thesis, degree project, scientific journals or the like.


After admission to third-cycle studies you will be appointed to doctoral studentship. Regulations for employment of doctoral students are given in SFS 1993:100. The initial appointment may apply for no longer than one year. An appointment may be renewed for no more than two years at a time. A person may be appointed to a doctoral studentship for a total of eight years. The total employment period may, however, not exceed the time corresponding to full-time third-cycle study for four years.

Location: Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Radiation Physics. Extent: 100%. First day of employment: as agreed.

Salaries for doctoral students are regulated in a local agreement at the University. 

For further information regarding the position

For more information about the project please contact the principal supervisor, 
Niclas Pettersson, Institute of Clinical Sciences,


Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg:

Information for International Applicants

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How to apply

In order to apply for a position at the University of Gothenburg, you have to register an account in our online recruitment system. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the job advertisement, and that it is submitted before the deadline.

You must include the following, in pdf format

  • Personal letter
  • CV
  • Diploma and transcripts showing that you meet with the general entry requirement
  • Proof of completion of  English 6 course or the acquired equivalent knowledge through previous studies

If your degree is from a university outside of Sweden, check what you need to submit at where you can also see what you need to submit in order to fulfill the English language requirement.

  • If your degree has not been verified by a Swedish authority you need to provide contact details to the issuing university, registrar or similar, that can verify the degree at our request.

Closing date: 2020-08-06

The University of Gothenburg promotes equal opportunities, equality and diversity.

Applications will be destroyed or returned (upon request) two years after the decision of employment has become final. Applications from the employed and from those who appeal the decision will not be returned.

In your application, please refer to


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