St. Anna Children's Cancer Research Institute (CCRI)

PhD Student (f/m/d) stem cell and organoid models for pediatric cancer research

2024-04-30 (Europe/Vienna)
Save job

Are you interested in deciphering the developmental origins of childhood cancers?

Do you already have experience in genetic engineering / cell culture and want to complement your skills with bioinformatics? Then this position is ideal for you!

The Halbritter Group is recruiting a PhD student (f/m/d) interested in applying stem cell and organoid models for pediatric cancer research. Join our multi-disciplinary team and use cutting-edge experimental techniques and computational approaches to tackle some of the unresolved mysteries at the interface of cancer, developmental and genome biology.

Our team aims to understand the earliest cellular and molecular changes that occur in childhood cancers. By achieving a mechanistic understanding of the underlying biology, we hope to inspire new diagnostics and treatments. Our work ranges from the analysis of tumor specimens (, through in vitro modelling of tumorigenesis (, to the development and evaluation of bioinformatics methods ( In a new project, recently funded by the Austrian Science Fund (, we will model embryonal tumors using organoid technology. Your contribution to this project will be primarily on the experimental side, but you will actively participate in the generation and bioinformatic analysis of genomics data. Please note that this project involves international collaborations including extended research visits in the UK and Japan.

Your responsibilities

  • Stem cell experiments: You will work with pluripotent stem cell lines (cell culture and engineering) and collect samples for functional and molecular analysis.
  • Data analysis: You will generate molecular (e.g., PCR), imaging (e.g., confocal microscopy), and genomics (e.g., single-cell RNA-sequencing) data, and analyze these data together with your team members.
  • Learning: You will take a deep interest in cancer and developmental biology, and gain experience in hands-on bioinformatics analysis throughout the project.
  • Leading research: You will be a key driver of this project involved in and shaping all stages of the process. You will work with high scientific integrity and rigor.
  • Dissemination: You will present your work at conferences, apply for fellowships, and write manuscripts.
  • Teamwork: You will work in a highly collaborative multi-team project alongside computational and experimental biologists and in constant exchange with collaborators around the globe.

Your profile

What you bring for this position:

  • Master’s degree in a relevant subject, e.g., molecular, stem cell, developmental, cancer, or computational biology
  • Good understanding of molecular and developmental biology, ideally in the field of cancer research
  • Previous experience with cell culture and genetic engineering is mandatory. Previous experience with pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs/ESCs) is desirable. You will receive training for specific stem cell models from international experts
  • A sound understanding of statistics
  • Team player with proactive “getting things done’’ mentality; determination, perseverance, creativity and curiosity
  • Excellent verbal and written English language skills (German is not required)
  • A willingness to travel, live, and work in non-EU countries for up to 6 months during the project is essential
  • The following are considered additional pluses: Experience with preparing libraries for genomics analysis (e.g., scRNA-seq or ATAC-seq)
  • Experience with programming and/or computational biology workflows in R or Python

Our offer

Does this sound interesting? This is our offer to you:

  • A challenging role in a meaningful, inspiring, and international environment
  • Close interactions with researchers and clinician-scientists at neighboring institutions Access to state-of-the-art infrastructure
  • A supportive working atmosphere in a multi-disciplinary team
  • Access to state-of-the-art infrastructure and facilities
  • Support for career development via courses (e.g., presentation skills, writing, ...) and hands-on training (e.g., bioinformatics)
  • Participation in international conferences, excellent networking opportunities
  • Flexible working hours with home office, discounted lunch in our canteen, communal social and sports activities, and other great benefits
  • Great location in the center of Vienna, a capital of biomedical research in Europe with excellent quality of life
  • An attractive salary package according to the Austrian Science Fund FWF (

Who we are

The St. Anna Children's Cancer Research Institute (St. Anna CCRI) is located in the heart of Vienna, the most livable city in the world and one of the most important sites for biomedical research in Europe. St. Anna CCRI is a multidisciplinary and internationally networked center of excellence whose goal is to contribute to a sustainable improvement in the cure rates of childhood and adolescent cancers through innovative research and development. Due to the close cooperation between clinic and research, St. Anna Children's Cancer Research offers the ideal environment for innovative research at a high international level and its implementation in clinical practice.

St. Anna CCRI is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and are committed to providing a work environment of mutual respect to everyone without regard to race, skin color, religion, national origin, age, gender identity or expression, disability, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws, regulations and ordinances.

Find more information here:

Your application

We are looking forward to your application! Applications should at least contain your Curriculum Vitae, a cover letter detailing your motivation, a list of publications (if applicable, explain your contributions) and the contact details of 2-3 scientific references.

The application deadline is the 30.04.2024. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Job details

PhD Student (f/m/d) stem cell and organoid models for pediatric cancer research
Zimmermannplatz 10 Vienna, Austria
Application deadline
2024-04-30 23:59 (Europe/Vienna)
2024-04-30 23:59 (CET)
Job type
Save job

About the employer

CCRI strives to improve treatment for children with cancer by bringing together clinical research with open-minded exploration of basic disease mec...

Visit the employer page

This might interest you

5 Reasons to Pursue Your PhD at EMBL European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) 4 min read
Deciphering the Gut’s Clues to Our Health University of Turku 5 min read
Understanding the Role of Epigenetics in Evolution University of Jyväskylä 4 min read
More stories