PhD Scholarship in Targeting cholesterol biosynthesis and trafficking through specific protein degradation

Friday 26 Jun 20

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A 3-year PhD scholarship in chemical biology funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation is available at the Department of Chemistry. The project will be under supervision of Luca Laraia and will start on November 1st 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter. The successful candidate will join a recently established, young research team, which is a part of the Chemical Biology group.

Project Description

Proteolysis-targeting chimeras (PROTACs) have recently emerged as a new method to degrade proteins of interest by linking a small molecule binder to an E3 ligase ligand. The project will employ this technology to target proteins related to cholesterol biosynthesis and transport. This multi-disciplinary project is part of a larger group effort to identify new regulators of cholesterol homeostasis and will involve organic synthesis, cell biology and mass spectrometry-based proteomics.


The successful candidate should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree in chemistry with prior experience in synthetic organic chemistry, including standard characterization methods. Experience in cell biology would be an advantage but is not essential. However, a keen interest in applying chemical tools to solve biological problems is crucial. Most importantly, the candidate should be highly motivated, able to work independently and should be confident in both written and spoken English.

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.


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.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here. 

Further information

Further questions about the project should be directed to Assistant Professor Luca Laraia, email: or the Head of Organic and Inorganic Chemistry Section, Professor Jens Ø. Duus, email:


Please do not send applications to this e-mail address, instead apply online as described below.


Please submit your online application no later than 31 July 2020 (23:59 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
  • Contact details for at least two references
  • 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.

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