Careers at UMC Utrecht
Vacancy number: 2017/0846
Apply to: December 03 2017
Education: University
Employment: Temporary position
Full-time/Part-time percentage: 100%

We offer a full-time position for a period of 4 years with the aim to obtain a PhD degree. The position is financed by Metakids, the fundraiser for patients with Metabolic Diseases and the project focuses on the development of novel treatment strategies for patients with metabolic diseases. This encompasses setting up functional assays in primary epithelial cell cultures (liver organoids) to develop novel therapies for metabolic diseases and test these in a personalized manner. In addition, we are in the process of setting up liver organoid transplantations as an alternative for liver transplantation in patients with metabolic diseases. In this context, it is crucial to improve transplantation efficiency in animal models to enable preparation of the first in human clinical trial. The ultimate goal would be to transplant genetically corrected patient derived liver organoids, necessitating solid gene editing procedures and genetic stability testing. Depending on the applicants capacities and interests, we can create an individually optimally tailored research project which will involve biochemical, molecular biological, gene editing and imaging techniques. The PhD research project is embedded in the PhD programs of Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cells. These programs provide broad course programs for their PhD students in the framework of the Utrecht Graduate School for Life Sciences and organize various scientific workshops and colloquia.


This translational project is embedded in the department of Metabolic Diseases/Pediatric Gastroenterology in both the Wihelmina Children's Hospital (WKZ) and the Regenerative Medical Center Utrecht (RMCU) in the Hubrecht Institute. The research group is headed by prof. dr. Edward Nieuwenhuis and focuses on genetic epithelial cell defects in pediatric intestinal and liver diseases. This research line is well embedded within the UMCU focus areas Child Health and Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cells. Together with the other PIs, PhD students, technicians and students of various backgrounds, we form a dynamic and ambitious research group. Most of the lab work takes place in the RMCU in the Hubrecht Institute, enabling close collaboration with other regenerative groups from the UMCU and with the Clevers group (organoid technology). Patient material and information collection and work discussions take place in the WKZ (and sometimes in other hospitals) and enable translation from bench to bedside and vice versa. The Research of dr. Sabine Fuchs focuses on Metabolic Diseases. In general, these inherited diseases are severe and seriously affect life expectancy. Treatment options are limited. The aim is to unravel the disease pathology to develop novel treatment strategies and test these in a personalized manner by making use of primary cell cultures grown as organoids as a unique patient derived in vitro model.


Candidates must be highly motivated with doctoral training in biology, developmental biology, medical biology, molecular biology, medicine or other closely related life sciences. The candidate should have a proven affinity with fundamental as well as translational cell biological research and preferably has experience with (or is eager to learn about) cell culture, microscopy, molecular biology, gene editing and animal experiments (article 9). We welcome original and critical thinking, creativity, pro-activity, good communication skills and team spirit!

The maximum salary for this position (100%) is € 2.919,00 gross per month based on full-time employment (work week 36 hours). This job is based on a temporary position for fout years.


The position is now available and is preferably filled by january 2018. If you are interested in this exciting job, please send a motivation letter and curriculum vitae. Selected candidates will be invited for a job interview.

More information

If you have any questions about this vacancy, please contact Mrs.MD, PhD S.A. Fuchs, Metabolic Pediatrician, PI inherited liver diseases, phone 0887553913. Email

Acquisition based on this jobopening is not appreciated.

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