The Novo Nordisk Foundation for Biosustainability (DTU Biosustain) at the Technical University of Denmark is seeking a highly motivated PhD candidate with an interest in big data approaches for bioreactor engineering for the purpose of cultivating mammalian cells for therapeutic protein production.
The position will be within the newly established National Biologics Facility (NBF) at DTU – a continuation of an 8-year long CHO program at DTU Biosustain. The PhD position commences in Q1 2021 under supervision by CSO Prof. Lars Keld Nielsen.
The research in the NBF aims to accelerate the development of therapeutic proteins in CHO cells and improve protein secretion, human-like glycosylation and data-driven bioprocesses. Optimizing bioprocesses for therapeutic protein production plays a critical role in pushing cost-of-goods-sold (COGS) down and will be invaluable in the quest to accelerate the development and reach of new therapeutic proteins.
Advancing bioreactor engineering
You will work as part of an interdisciplinary team focusing on advancing bioreactor engineering for mammalian cells, in particular Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cells. This involves working with high throughput parallel bioreactors: the ambr15-48 bioreactor (48 parallel cultures at 15mL) and DASGIP-8 bioreactors (8 parallel cultures at 250 mL); and integrating the collected data. You will explore the extent to which multiomics datasets as well as genome scale models can be used to optimize bioreactor performance further, moving from purely data-driven algorithms to mixed data and model/based (gray box) approaches.
Your role will primarily be to efficiently integrate data collection and analysis using Bayesian learning to optimize bioreactor performance, write scientific publications, as well as take 30 ECTS points of relevant PhD courses as required in Danish PhD programs. The candidate is expected to have a secondment for 3-6 months in another research group.
Two-year master’s degree (120 ECTS points) in bioengineering or similar discipline
We are looking for candidates with a two-year master’s degree (120 ECTS points) or equivalent in a relevant discipline. You have experience in advanced bioreactor engineering for mammalian systems with substantial knowledge of metabolic biochemistry. You will also have intermediate programming skills (preferably Python) ideally with some experience interfacing databases and R scripting.
The ideal candidates additionally have experience or interest in one or more of the following areas (not mandatory):
- Cultivation and engineering of CHO cells
- Monitoring and controlling bioreactor systems
- Cell culture/fermentation analysis (Cell counters, Bioanalyzer, HPLC, ELISA, Octet)
- Production of therapeutic proteins
- Continuous/perfusion bioreactor systems
- Big data integration/implementation
Collaboration is an integral part of this project and we expect that you can demonstrate a track-record for successfully collaborating with your peers. At the same time, analysis and integration of big data sets requires periods of precise individual work and it is important that you draw satisfaction from this mode of work as well.
Approval and Enrolment
The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.
If you would like additional information about the position, please contact Dr Lise Marie Grav at firstname.lastname@example.org or Professor Lars Keld Nielsen at email@example.com. You can read more about DTU Biosustain at www.biosustain.dtu.dk.
Salary and terms of employment
The period of employment is three years. The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union.
Please submit your online application no later than 18 December 2020 (Danish time).
Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link “Apply online”, fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:
- A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
- Curriculum vitae
- Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
- Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)
Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master’s degree but cannot begin before having received it.
Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.
All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.
The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability (DTU Biosustain)
Recent progress in our ability to read and write genomic code, combined with advances in automation, analytics and data science, has fundamentally changed the scope and ambition of harnessing the potential of biological systems. Big data approaches and analysis of biological systems are key research instruments at the Center. DTU Biosustain utilizes these advances for microbial cell factory design to foster sustainable lifestyles in relation to three application areas: Sustainable Chemicals, Natural Products, and Microbial Foods. Learn more at biosustain.dtu.dk.
Technology for people
DTU develops technology for people. With our international elite research and study programmes, we are helping to create a better world and to solve the global challenges formulated in the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Hans Christian Ørsted founded DTU in 1829 with a clear vision to develop and create value using science and engineering to benefit society. That vision lives on today. DTU has 12,000 students and 6,000 employees. We work in an international atmosphere and have an inclusive, evolving, and informal working environment. Our main campus is in Kgs. Lyngby north of Copenhagen and we have campuses in Roskilde and Ballerup and in Sisimiut in Greenland.
Deadline: 18 December 2020
Unit: Center for Biosustainability
Read the job description and apply online
Post expires on Friday December 18th, 2020