Do you want to contribute to top quality medical research?

To be a doctoral student means to devote oneself to a research project under supervision of experienced researchers and following an individual study plan. For a doctoral degree, the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral education is required.

The research group

The Högberg group is part of Molecular Systems Bioengineering at the department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics at the Karolinska Institutet (KI) which encompasses five research groups whose work focuses on creating new bioengineering techniques and new materials for cell biology research. Our diverse team of physicists, biologists, chemists, and computational biologists is a leading group in the field of DNA nanotechnology specialized in creating molecular tools for life-science. We offer a stimulating scientific environment and a top research infrastructure both locally, at the department level and institution level. 

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

Current technologies for long term data storage do not provide a sustainable way to store the increasing amount of data generated in the world therefore new approaches need to be developed. One of the candidates for alternative data storage medium holding a lot of promise is DNA as, if the technology gets fully realized, it offers several advantages: high storage density, exceptional stability on long timescales among other things. However, DNA-based information storage technologies in their current form mostly provide cold-storage solutions with limited real-life applicability. We are looking for a PhD student that would join our team to help us in improving current manifestations of DNA-based data storage in terms of data stability and dynamic data operability in vitro and in vivo as part of the Dura-store project (, participating in the European Innovation Council’s Pathfinder Challenge for DNA-based digital data storage. As a doctoral student, you are expected to take a leading role in your research project under the supervision of your PhD supervisors, taking an active part in study design, data generation, processing and communicating the results. You are also expected to complete the doctoral education through taking relevant courses and completing the doctoral thesis project and in the process become an independent researcher by the end of the study.

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

You should have knowledge of basic lab techniques such as PCR, basic enzymatic methods for nucleic acid manipulation (e.g. ligation, restriction digestion), gel electrophoretic techniques in addition to techniques in molecular cloning and transgenic protein production workflow. The ability to conduct lab work and document results in a precise and neat manner and to discuss and present results comprehensively is required.

It is advantageous if the applicant has experience in one or some of the following:

  • Nucleicacid amplification techniques (e.g. PCR, LAMP, IVT).
  • Work with nucleoproteins.
  • Work in the field of synthetic biology.
  • Transgenic protein production in bacteria.
  • Working with bacteriophages.
  • Working with bioinformatics tools in Python, R, Julia.

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.

Link to project:

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 according to agreement
Salary Monthly
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Solna
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number STÖD 2-1235/2024
  • Professor Björn Högberg ,
Union representative
  • Anurupa Nagchowdhury (OFR),
Published 19.Mar.2024
Last application date 05.May.2024 11:59 PM CEST

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