PhD scholarship in Protease Engineering

Wednesday 10 Jul 19

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Apply no later than 15 September 2019
Apply for the job at DTU Food by completing the following form.

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The National Food Institute (DTU Food) invites applications for a PhD position in protease engineering. The position is affiliated to the Research Group for Gut, Microbes and Health in the Division of Diet, Disease Prevention and Toxicology - a dynamic, sociable and highly ambitious research environment.

The PhD position is associated to a larger research project, PROVIDE, aiming at developing natural peptides as food and feed ingredients by enzymatic hydrolysis of available proteins. The project is supported by Innovation Fund Denmark and involves five industrial partners and two universities.

The PhD will focus on the development of proteases able to releasing predetermined peptides from selected proteins. A specific focus will be on cell wall proteinases from lactic acid bacteria.

Responsibilities and tasks
The purpose of the PhD project will be to establish solid scientific evidence allowing the generation of catalysts needed for production of peptides with specific properties.

The project will cover the following tasks:

  • Bioinformatic approaches to selecting protease candidates
  • Assay development for detecting the desired protease specificity
  • Development of procedures for selection and screening of specific proteases
  • Engineering proteases by swapping domains between different proteases
  • Engineering or evolution of desired protease specificity
Further tasks will be: 
  • Disseminate results at conferences and through scientific articles
  • Supervision duties of bachelor or master students
  • A mandatory external research stay
  • Attend PhD courses (30 ECTS)
Candidates should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree within life science.

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.  

The successful candidate is expected to have knowledge and experience within molecular biology, microbial genetics, and biochemistry. The preferred candidate is ambitious, has a high motivation for research excellence and good command of written and spoken English.

Preference will be given to candidates with knowledge in:
  • food fermentation, and/or
  • molecular genetics of Gram positive microorganisms, and/or
  • protein chemistry, and/or
  • bioinformatics.
We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms
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. The period of employment is 3 years.

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Further information
Further information may be obtained from Professor Egon Bech Hansen,, tel: +45 5171 3881. 

You can read more about DTU Food at  

Please submit your online application no later than 15 September 2019 (local 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.

Interviews will take place end of September and early October, and expected start of the PhD student is November 1
st 2019. 

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.

DTU Food (The National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark) works within six technical focus areas: Biotechnology, nutrition, food quality, food safety, food technology and environment & human health. Activities cover a wide range of food products throughout the entire food chain from farm to table, comprising both research activities and research-based consulting and teaching.

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and
scientific advice. Our staff of 6,000 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society, and our 11,200 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent university collaborating globally with business, industry, government and public agencies.