PhD student position in RNA biology, circadian clocks and disease, CIG (UNIL)

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The University of Lausanne (UNIL) hosts 14’100 students and nearly 3’800 collaborators, professors, and researchers. Ideally situated at the banks of Lake Geneva, near Lausanne’s city center, its campus brings together more than 120 nationalities and is embedded in the larger, regional, vibrant life science research cluster.


To complement the research activities in the group of Prof. David Gatfield at the CIG (Center for Integrative Genomics) of the University of Lausanne, we are seeking to recruit a PhD student to work on projects relating to RNA biology, circadian clocks and disease.

Job information

Expected start date in position: 01.09.2021 or to be agreed
Contract length: 1 year, renewable, maximum 4 years
Activity rate: 100% (minimum of 50% for research thesis, maximum of 50% for the institute)
Workplace: University of Lausanne, Dorigny

Your responsibilities

The successful applicant’s main responsibility will consist in conducting scientific research within the broad topic of our lab, which investigates how regulatory mechanisms occurring at the RNA level interact with the circadian timekeeping system, including its relevance for disease. One of the envisioned projects will entail work with a novel in vivo model of nonsense mediated mRNA decay (NMD). The PhD student will benefit from exposure to a multidisciplinary mix of molecular biological, cellular and mouse genetics/behavioural approaches, in combination with state-of-the-art genomics (ribosome profiling) and bioinformatics techniques. Full funding for the position is available, although application to personal, international fellowship programs will be encouraged.

Your qualifications

Highly motivated scientist and critical thinker with a Master degree in biology, medicine, or a related discipline. Team player. Good knowledge in English (full working proficiency). Willingness and interest in developing a PhD thesis in the broader fields of chronobiology/molecular biology.

What the position offers you

The Gatfield lab is hosted at the Center for Integrative Genomics (CIG) at the University of Lausanne (UNIL), a vibrant, well-funded institute with a focus on functional genomics and equipped with modern core facilities (see It is embedded in the broader Lausanne research environment that includes two universities (UNIL, EPFL), the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics, Ludwig Center for Cancer Research, university hospital, and a cluster of biotech companies flourishing in the larger lake Geneva area. We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diversified and dynamic academic environment.

Through the Gatfield lab’s membership in the National Centre of Competence in Research RNA & Disease (, lab members benefit from networking and training opportunities throughout Switzerland and contacts to other leading RNA research labs in Zürich, Bern, Basel and Geneva.

The PhD student will be enrolled in the Faculty of Biology and Medicine’s doctoral school (

Contact for further information

Prof. David Gatfield

Phone number : +41 21 692 39 94

Your application

To apply, please submit a motivation letter describing why you are interested in joining our group, a CV (with copy of your Master grade), and contact details for 2 or more referees. Only applications through this website will be taken into account. We thank you for your understanding.

Deadline: 15.05.2021