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PhD position in cell biology at the University of Lausanne starting January 2023

Closing Date
WorkplaceLausanne, Rue du Bugnon, Lake Geneva region, Switzerland
DurationUp to 5 years
Occupation rate
Job StartJanuary 2023

The scientific mission of the department of biomedical sciences, made up of more than 15 research groups and nearly 120 collaborators, is to study the biological mechanisms that govern the function of the human body and are responsible for the appearance of various diseases.
The laboratory of Prof. Christian Widmann investigates the uptake mechanisms of cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) and physiological proteins bearing CPP sequences such as homeoproteins.
CPPs generally correspond to short cationic peptides. They are often present in anti-cancer and anti-microbial peptides but also found in important signaling proteins such as homeoproteins. CPPs allow the intracellular delivery of cargo molecules that are hooked to them. Despite their potential practical applications, the mechanisms of CPP entry inside cells are ill-defined and even controversial. The current focus of our laboratory is to characterize the mechanism of CPP cell entry via direct translocation or via endocytosis and how they escape endosomes when they use this later entry route. We also investigate how physiological molecules that naturally bear cell-penetrating sequences, such as homeoproteins, enter cells.


We are seeking to recruit highly motivated PhD students to investigate the mechanistic aspects of cell-penetrating peptide (CPP) entry into cells. The PhD students will in particular work on a newly identified endocytic pathway that we have discovered and that needs now to be further characterized at the molecular, mechanistic, and physiological levels. Please refer to our Research page (?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwp.unil.ch%2Fwidmannlab%2Fresearch%2F&module=jobs&id=217746" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwp.unil.ch%2Fwidmannlab%2Fresearch%2F&module=jobs&id=217746" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">https://wp.unil.ch/­widmannlab/research/) for information on the ways CPPs enter cells. Information on our research group can be found on our webpage (?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwp.unil.ch%2Fwidmannlab%2F&module=jobs&id=217746" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwp.unil.ch%2Fwidmannlab%2F&module=jobs&id=217746" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">https://wp.unil.ch/­widmannlab/).


The successful applicant will have a master in cell biology, biochemistry or a related biological discipline. Required qualifications include prior knowledge on CPPs and endocytosis, creativity, the capacity to maintain excellent documentation of their work, to collaborate proficiently, and to communicate effectively with colleagues.

We offer

This position is available January 1, 2023, for 1 year in the first instance with the possibility of two extensions of 2 years each.

Contact and Address

Interested candidates should apply to these positions through both the FBM fellowship channel and by sending their applications to the lab head (Christian.Widmannunil.ch). For the latter channel, provide a CV, a brief statement of research experience and interests as well as contact information of 2-3 references.

FBM fellowships: https://www.unil.ch/­ecoledoctoralefbm/en/­home/menuinst/­doctorate/­phd-in-life-sciences/­fellowships.html


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In your application, please refer to myScience.uk and reference JobID 217746.