PhD position in the Computational Neurobiology lab

Antwerp VIB-UAntwerp Center for Molecular Neurology

11 Aug 2022


VIB-UAntwerp Center for Molecular Neurology

Valeriya Malysheva Lab



05 Sep 2022

Project description

We are the Computational Neurobiology lab and address fundamental questions in chromatin organization, epigenetics and brain biology. We develop machine learning approaches for large-scale data integration and reconstruct cis-regulatory networks to understand how a cell “chooses” its fate. In particular, we focus on the role of chromatin organization in neuronal cell fate specification and neurodegenerative disease, aiming to bring results of fundamental research to the clinic.

The proposed PhD project aims to understand how a cell makes a choice between gene isoforms with alternative transcription start sites, and in particular, what is the role of chromatin organisation in this process. The selected candidate will work in the context of the human neuro-immune system and will use cutting-edge experimental and computational tehcniques to reveal the cis-regulatory networks underlying this complex process.

The VIB-UAntwerp Center for Molecular Neurology has 6 PIs and hosts internationally recognized leaders in the field of Neurogenetics and Neuroinflammation. Current research groups address a broad set of questions related to neurodegenerative diseases of the central and peripheral nervous system, with an emphasis on understanding the genetic etiology and developing diagnostics and treatment methods for these diseases. Approaches range from human genetics and genomics to protein biochemistry and neuronal and glial cell biology, while models include yeast, fly, mouse, and pluripotent human cell systems. Research groups have access to state-of-the-art research and top-notch support core facilities and attract talented international scientist from across the world. 

The VIB-UAntwerp Center is part of VIB, a Life Sciences institute with colleague-researchers in cancer, biotechnology, structural biology, immunology amongst others and an extensive set of core facilities and opportunities for technology transfer. We are also embedded within the University of Antwerp.


The candidate should:

  • have an MSc in Systems Biology, Molecular Biology, Natural Sciences or related disciplines
  • have good communication and writing skills in English
  • be very motivated and enthusiastic to learn and expand both computational and experimental skill set
  • a detailed CV
  • a letter of motivation describing your interests and contact details of one or two referees

Required skills

  • confident in basic molecular biology techniques
  • basic programming skills in R and/or python

Desirable skills

  • knowledge of gene regulatory mechanisms
  • statistical analysis
  • processing of NGS data


  • The host lab provides financial support for the whole length of the PhD. The applicant will also be assisted in applying for personal fellowships.
  • Access to state-of-the-art infrastructure and core facilities in a vibrant, world-class research environment operating at an international level
  • Dedicated training programs available through VIB and UAntwerp to broaden your expertise and enhance your skillset
  • A stimulating and international research environment
  • A strong and dynamic network of international collaborators

As part of the VIB-UAntwerp Center for Molecular Neurology and VIB, the applicant will benefit from established collaborations and access to centralized facilities with expertise in genomics, functional genomics and cell biology, proteomics, cutting-edge microscopy, structural biology, technology development, and bioinformatics.

VIB provides a highly interactive environment and ample training opportunities for its researchers. In addition, the VIB-UAntwerp Center for Molecular Neurology is located in the city of Antwerp, the capital of Flanders, offering a culturally and historically rich, and ethnically diverse environment.

Starting date: as soon as possible, can be discussed

How to apply?

You can apply for this job through the online VIB job application platform. Don’t forget to include the following document(s):

For more information: please contact or

VIB values diversity - in backgrounds and in experiences. The institute needs people from all backgrounds and ways of life to help build a thriving scientific environment. VIB is therefore looking for candidates who are not only strong in their own aptitudes but care deeply about supporting each other's growth. VIB's collaborators are people with different strengths, experiences and backgrounds, who share a passion for science that generates impact in science and in society. Diversity not only includes race and gender identity, but also nationality, age, disability status, sexual orientation, religion and many other parts of ones identity. All of VIB's employees' points of view are key to its success, and inclusion is everyone's responsibility.