About Malmö University
Malmö University is an innovative, urban and international institute of higher education, located in the center of Malmö. We have around 1,800 employees and 24,000 students. Malmö University is organized into five faculties: Faculty of Health and Society, Culture and Society, Education and Society, Faculty of Odontology and Technology and Society.

The Department of Biomedical Science, Faculty of Health and Society, offers a programme leading to a professional qualification, Biomedical Scientist (first cycle, 180 credits), and a Masters' programme, Biomedical Surface Science (second cycle, 120 credits), as well as first and second cycle freestanding courses. The Department negotiates the multifaceted intersection between biology, chemistry, medicine, physics, and technology and the interdisciplinary approach to research and education aims to further the theoretical and practical understanding of the complex subject matter. Drawing on the balance between pure and applied research, the Department has been successful in attracting funding from regional, national, and international research funding bodies.

The research at the faculty is also linked to the research center Biofilms - Research Center for Biointerfaces, which combines biomedical science with clinical and translational research in medical, dental, food and environmental application areas in close collaboration with regional industry. 

Projects / tasks
As never before, with the outbreak of COVID-19, there is an urgent need of novel therapeutic solutions to fight dangerous and contagious lung infections. It is estimated that the lung infection caused by Tuberculosis bacteria kills 5000 people every day and about one third of the world’s population is infected. One of the therapeutic challenges is to deliver high amounts of drugs at the infection site reducing toxic effects. Inhalation therapies are highly recommended but often the delivered drug amount to the lungs is not sufficient.

The research project has the aim to develop a bioinspired drug delivery platform to administer drugs safely and effectively to the lungs to tackle Tuberculosis infections. A new type of porous particle will be designed with a unique combination of optimized aerodynamic features and bioinspired surface coating that take inspiration from the Mycobacterium tuberculosis evolution. The cellular uptake of particles is explored as strategy to tackle the intracellular bacteria in infected macrophages (i.e. “Trojan approach”). Different drugs will be encapsulated to address several therapeutic targets and overcome resistant mechanisms. In vitro and ex vivo models of Tuberculous granuloma will be used to understand the biological effect. 

The candidate for this PhD position will have the opportunity to embrace a multidisciplinary study varying from surface and colloidal chemistry, physicochemical characterization, drug release and permeation, biomarkers expression, lipid extractions, cellular uptake, toxicity and antimicrobial effect. The research activities will be conducted in a network of academic, industrial, and clinical partners with national and international collaborations. We believe that the project will advance an innovative drug delivery technology towards clinical prospective and that this research investigation will lead to new opportunities and recommendations for inhaled pharmaceutical formulation. 

About the position
The PhD education will run for four years. The research topic is "Biomedical Science" and the Faculty offers a Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in BioMedical Science. The PhD student will also have the opportunity to take part in teaching. Provisions on appointment as a PhD student are laid out in the Swedish Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 5. When making the appointment, under Chapter 5, Section 5 of the Swedish Higher Education Ordinance, consideration must be given to the student's ability to benefit from studies.

In order to be considered for admission as a doctoral student, the applicant must meet the general and specific entry requirements for third-cycle courses and study programmes, and is considered in other respects to have the ability required to benefit from the course or study programme. Ordinance (2010:1064). The higher education institution may permit an exemption from the general entry requirements for an individual applicant, if there are special grounds. Ordinance (2010: 1064).

Those who are employed as doctoral students are expected to primarily devote themselves to their own research education (located at Malmö University). The intended degree is a PhD, which corresponds to a 4- year full-time research education. Departmental duties may amount to a maximum of 20%.

The processes of admission to research education and employment as a doctoral student run in parallel. The basic eligibility for admission includes the following:

  1. having completed a second-cycle level degree,
  2. having fulfilled course requirements comprising a minimum of 240 higher education credits, including at

least 60 second-cycle credits, or

  1. having in other ways, inside or outside Sweden, substantially acquired the equivalent knowledge. (Higher Education Ordinance Ch. 7, section 39).

 In addition, adequate knowledge of English is required

Basis of assessment 
The ideal candidate have a background in chemistry or pharmacy or biomedical sciences with a good understanding in physical chemistry, chemical engineering, biophysics and nanotechnology. Experience from working with porous particles, surface and colloidal chemistry, drug delivery and biomarkers expression, pharmaceutical technology and inhalation is advantageous.
Special considerations will be given to previous hands-on experience in more than one of the following methods: TGA, DSC, FT-IR, nitrogen adsorption desorption, scattering techniques; surface chemistry, lipid extraction techniques, TLC, MALDI; analytical methods such as LC coupled with UV-vis and mass spectroscopy; diffusion cell equipments; gene and proteins expression, western blott, ELISA, RT-PCR, ATP bioluminescence; cellular and bacterial cultures, air/liquid interface cells model, flow cytometry. Excellent level of English (understanding, speaking and writing) is essential since the candidate is expected to present the results in form of manuscripts.

Further, considering that the project requires collaboration between academic, industrial, and clinical partners, it is expected that the applicant actively communicates and collaborate within this context; project management and leadership abilities are therefore highly appreciated. The candidate should also have the ability to work in a team and collaborate with people in complementary disciplines. 

Further information
For more information contact Sabrina Valetti, +46 (0)703822786, sabrina.valetti@mau.se
For general questions regarding employment at Malmö university, contact HR-specialist Linda-Lo Johansson +46 (0)40 6657840, linda-lo.johansson@mau.se

In our recruitment work, Malmö University has taken a stand regarding recruitment channels and marketing. We therefore decline all offers of advertising and recruitment assistance in connection with this advertisement.

You apply for this position via Malmö University's recruitment system by clicking on the "Apply" button. As an applicant, you are responsible for ensuring that your application is completed in accordance with the advertisement, and that it is provided to the University no later than 7th of June.

The application should contain the following:

  1. A brief summary of scientific, teaching and other qualifications relevant to the position, together with a motivation for applying to this PhD-student position
  2. Attested copies of certificates
  3. Signed list of qualifications (CV)
  4. List of scientific publications
  5. Copy of a master degree thesis or equivalent.
  6. Copies of three of your most relevant written work that you would like to highlight
  7. References (at least two; names, titles, contact information positions/relation)

This is a temporary full-time position in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance Ch. 5, section 7.

Malmö University is a workplace and higher education institution that is characterised by an open and inclusive approach, where gender equality and equal terms add value to our activities.

Start date
September 2020

Union representatives
SACO-S: Ann-Mari Campbell, ann-mari.campbell@mau.se
Lärarförbundet: Carl-Erik Blomberg, carl-erik.blomberg@mau.se
ST/OFR: Aje Carlbom aje.carlbom@mau.se

We are looking forward to receive your application!