PhD scholarship in mitigating the impact of PRV-3 infection in Rainbow trout production by high throughput diagnostic platforms

mandag 29 jul 19

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Frist 1. september 2019
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The DTU Institute for Aquatic Resources (DTU Aqua) invites applications for a PhD position in development of high throughput diagnostic platforms for mitigation of diseases in aquaculture. 


The project primarily aims to counteract a recently discovered viral disease in farmed Danish rainbow trout with high negative impact on modern aquaculture production based on environment friendly Recirculated Aquaculture Systems. 


The successful applicant will be based in the Unit for Fish and Shellfish Diseases at DTU Aqua, Building 202, DTU Campus in Kgs Lyngby. The PhD project is part of the GUDP project PRVent and will involve close collaboration with scientists and technical personnel in the team and with research partners in Norway.


Responsibilities and tasks 
The PhD study will focus on


1. Development and application of molecular and immunological tools for understanding host-pathogen interactions and predicting clinical disease outbreaks in farmed rainbow trout infected with PRV-3.

The reagents and tools to be developed include: Monoclonal antibodies directed against 3 major PRV-3 proteins for monitoring the virus infection in infected fish by immunohistochemistry, ELISA and other immunoassays, as well as for validating the Luminex technology for detection of PRV-3 specific antibodies in infected fish. 1) Fluorochrome-labelled oligonucleotide probes for detection of PRV-3 in fish tissues by In Situ Hybridization (FISH). 2) Development of recombinant PRV-3 proteins as antigens in serological assays for detection of PRV-3 specific antibodies in infected fish. 3) A high throughput PCR-assay for simultaneous detection/monitoring of PRV-3 genes and the fish immune response at mRNA level (Lab on a chip, Fluidigm).


2. Implementation of the developed tools and knowledge acquired in design of fish stock management strategies for mitigating production losses related to PRV-3.


The candidate is a motivated scientist with relevant experience from a MSc Study program and from subsequent employments. Ideally, you have a master in molecular biology, veterinary medicine, immunology, or equivalent. 

Furthermore the ideal candidate has:
  • Course in Laboratory animal science, EU Function AD (formerly FELASA category B) or ABD (formerly FELASA Category C)
  • Good laboratory skills
  • Good collaboration and communication skills (written and oral English)
  • Structured and analytical working approach
  • Experience with publication of scientific research

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 assessment of the applicants will be made by Professor Niels Jørgen Olesen.


We offer
We offer an interesting and challenging job in an international environment focusing on education, research, public-sector consultancy and innovation, which contribute to enhancing the economy and improving social welfare. 


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 information may be obtained from Professor Niels Jørgen Olesen: , +45 3588 6831 or +45 2924 4310.

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

You can read more about DTU Aqua on

Please submit your online application no later than 1 September 2019.

Applications must be submitted as one pdf file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online," fill in 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.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.


DTU Aqua provides research, advice and education at the highest international level within the sustainable exploitation of living marine and freshwater resources, the biology of aquatic organisms and the dynamics of ecosystems as well as their integration in ecosystem-based management. DTU Aqua has 350 employees, of whom a third are scientific staff. The other employees are assistant biologists, laboratory technicians, administrative staff, ship’s crew, student assistants etc. The institute is organised into eight scientific sections, which carry out the research, educational, advisory and innovation activities. In addition, the institute has a number of scientific and administrative support functions, including the research vessels. DTU Aqua has at present employees in Lyngby, Hirtshals, Nykøbing Mors and Silkeborg.


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.