Do you want to contribute to top quality medical research to improve human health?

A doctoral position within a collaborative project for understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of neuropathic pain is available in the laboratory of Saida Hadjab. The research spans from delineating the (epi)genetic and cell state changes in cells of the somatosensory system associated with pain disorders, and the role of metabolism pathways, to ultimately be able to find new pharmacological ways to reinstate healthy cell identity in pain disorders conditions.

Research group

The Hadjab laboratory studies the development, and homeostasis of the somatosensory neurons (Nat Comm 2019, Nat Comm 2020, Cell Rep 2019, Development 2019, Nature Comm 2021, Nat Comm 2022) using mouse genetics, advanced single cell omics technologies and behavior in mice. The laboratory is located in a collaborative division in the new building BIOMEDICUM at Karolinska Institutet. The selected student will continue the successful line of investigations based on single-cell multiomic to study pain-sensing neurons plasticity in health and disease, and how this can be affected by the metabolism rate.

Your mission

We are looking for a creative student, driven to answer biological questions from new angles. The selected candidate is expected to fulfill the course requirements of the doctoral program, participate in regular group meetings, seminars, present at national/international meetings and take part in routine work within the research team. Most important the student is expected to plan and drive the research projects, perform experiments, analyze, and present results.

To identify and test new potential target treatment for pain disorders, you will combine behavior, histology, virus technologies, fiber photometry, dissection, cutting-edge molecular biology, next-generation sequencing, and microscopy techniques, while working in synergy with experts in computational methods approaches. The project includes extensive mice work, cell dissociation and molecular biology skills. Experience with pain models and knowledge of the pain pathways is considered a plus, but not mandatory.

Applicants should also be self-motivated with good communication skills. 

What do we offer?

A creative and inspiring environment full of expertise and curiosity. Karolinska Institutet is one of the world's leading medical universities. Our vision is to pursue the development of knowledge about life and to promote a better health for all. At Karolinska Institutet, we conduct successful medical research and hold the largest range of medical education in Sweden. As a doctoral student you are offered an individual research project, a well-educated supervisor, a vast range of elective courses and the opportunity to work in a leading research group. Karolinska Institutet collaborates with prominent universities from all around the world, which ensures opportunities for international exchanges. You will be employed on a doctoral studentship which means that you receive a contractual salary. Employees also have access to our modern gym for free and receive reimbursements for medical care.

Eligibility requirements for doctoral education

In order to participate in the selection for a doctoral position, you must meet the following general (A) and specific (B) eligibility requirements at latest by the application deadline.

It is your responsibility to certify eligibility by following the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

A) General eligibility requirement

You meet the general eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

  1. have been awarded a second-cycle/advanced/master qualification (i.e. master degree), or
  2. have satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the advanced/second-cycle/master level, or
  3. have acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.*

Follow the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

*If you claim equivalent knowledge, follow the instructions on the web page Assessing equivalent knowledge for general eligibility for doctoral education.


B) Specific eligibility requirement

You meet the specific eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

- Show proficiency in English equivalent to the course English B/English 6 at Swedish upper secondary school.

Follow the instructions on the web page English language requirements for doctoral education.

Verification of your documents Karolinska Institutet checks the authenticity of your documents. Karolinska Institutet reserves the right to revoke admission if supporting documents are discovered to be fraudulent. Submission of false documents is a violation of Swedish law and is considered grounds for legal action.

(A) and (B) can only be certified by the documentation requirement for doctoral education.

Skills and personal qualities

[Enter here skills and personal qualities necessary or desirable/advantageous for this project and for the ability to reach the outcomes of the doctoral education. Make it clear for the applicants what is necessary and what is only desirable. It is important that this section is well thought-through in order to help in the selection process.]

Terms and conditions

The doctoral student will be employed on a doctoral studentship maximum 4 years full-time.

Application process

Submit your application and supporting documents through the Varbi recruitment system. Use the button in the top right corner and follow the instructions. We prefer that your application is written in English, but you can also apply in Swedish.

Your application must contain the following documents:

- A personal letter and a curriculum vitae
- Degree projects and previous publications, if any
- Any other documentation showing the desirable skills and personal qualities described above
- Documents certifying your general eligibility (see A above)
- Documents certifying your specific eligibility (see B above)


A selection will be made among eligible applicants on the basis of the ability to benefit from doctoral education. The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis.

Karolinska Institutet uses the following bases of assessment:

- Documented subject knowledge of relevance to the area of research
- Analytical skill
- Other documented knowledge or experience that may be relevant to doctoral studies in the subject.

All applicants will be informed when the recruitment is completed.

Want to make a difference? Join us and contribute to better health for all

Type of employment PhD placement
Contract type Full time
First day of employment December 2023
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Solna
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number STÖD 2-4001/2023
  • Saida Hadjab,
Published 18.Oct.2023
Last application date 08.Nov.2023 11:59 PM CET

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