PhD Position in Fetal Programming of Health and Disease

University of Bern Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine


PhD Student Position in Fetal Programming of Health and Disease

We invite applications for a PhD candidate position in the placental membrane biology research group at the Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Bern, Switzerland. The project will be focused on the effects that alterations in a variety of nutrient transporters and hormones in the placenta may have in programming the fetal brain, and the resulting phenotypes in adult mice in accordance with the developmental programming of health and disease hypothesis (DoHaD). The identified proteins will be tested in vitro, assessed in human samples, and manipulated in mutant mouse models.

The project investigates the role and regulation of placental genes and proteins in the placenta and how they affect fetal brain programming and the long-term phenotype in the context of metabolic and psychiatric disorders. Special focus will be put on natural variations in nutrient and hormone transport and their direct link to the fetal brain, referred to as the "placenta-brain axis". The project involves in vivo experiments in mice, as well as methods in molecular biology, neurobiology, cell culture, microscopy, and biochemical analyses. The position is supported by the Hans Sigrist Foundation

Highly motivated applicants should have previous experience in animal experiments (mice) and in methods of molecular biology, mammalian cell culture and biochemistry. Candidates should preferentially have a Swiss or European university PhD degree in natural sciences, medicine, neuroscience, or veterinary medicine. Knowledge of the German language is required.
PhD student salary comparable to that of the Swiss National Science Foundation.
Start date: Spring 2022
Duration of appointment: 3 years
Applications should be addressed to:

Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine
University of Bern
Bühlstr. 28
3012 Bern

In your application, please refer to


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