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CSC-Tübingen PhD Program: Project 04/2020:
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3), an inherited neurodegenerative disorder and intracellular protein degradation mechanisms

Topic Description:Your project is related to Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3), an inherited neurodegenerative disorder and intracellular protein degradation mechanisms. The affected protein ataxin-3 itself has deubiquitination activity and forms insoluble protein aggregates in affected brain areas of SCA3 patients. We recently demonstrated that specific ubiquitin mutations alleviated the motor phenotype in transgenic mouse models for the disease. You will elucidate how the ubiquitin/proteasom system can be targeted as a treatment approach for this currently incurable disease.

Faculty: Faculty of Medicine
Institute/Section/Subject:Institute of Medical Genetics and Applied Genomics, SCA3 research group

Supervising Professors:Jana Schmidt, Ph.D.

About the Supervisors:Jana Schmidt is Post Doc in the SCA3 research group in Tuebingen ( Dr. Schmidt has a Diploma degree in Biology and a PhD in Molecular Biology. Since 18 years Dr. Schmidt works on neurodegenerative diseases and is specialized on the characterization of mouse models for Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3). The SCA3 research group studies pathogenic mechanisms as well as modifying factors of the disease and develops treatment strategies for SCA3 using molecular biological, protein biochemical and cell biological methods. You will work in a state-of-the-art laboratory of the Institute of Medical Genetics & Applied Genomics in Tuebingen and will be thoroughly trained both in the required techniques as well as in the theoretical background of the project. Regular meetings with your supervisor and other scientists of the research group are the platform for exchange and interaction. Regular trainings ensure your continuous education in current trends in the field of human genetics and neurodegenerative disorders.

Requirements for the application:Required Degrees: Applicants for the Ph.D. student position should have a strong background in biomedical / life sciences and hold a Master or Diploma degree in Biomedical Sciences, Molecular Biology, Neuroscience, Genetics, Biochemistry, Biology, biotechnology or a related field. Experiences in molecular biological, protein-biochemical and cell-biological methods are appreciated.
Language Requirements: Good language skills in English are required. Language skills in German are recommended but not mandatory.

For further instructions on how to apply, more information on the program and contact details please see below.


CSC-Tübingen PhD Program
The China Scholarship Council (CSC) and the University of Tübingen have established a PhD Program which supports Chinese nationals inside and outside of China wishing to carry out all or part of their PhD study in Tübingen.


  • providing high quality research training to qualified students from Chinese universities
  • developing education and research collaborations between the University of Tübingen and Chinese universities and research institutions

Target group:
Excellent postgraduate and doctoral students from Chinese universities who are citizens and permanent residents of the People’s Republic of China at the time of application

Details: Full time fellowship:
  • postgraduate students who want to carry out their complete doctoral studies at the University of Tübingen
  • up to 48 months
  • degree conferred by the University of Tübingen

  • Annual living allowance as prescribed by the Chinese Government (which includes Overseas Student Health Cover)
  • Return airfare to Germany
  • Visa application fees
  • Support for the attendance of international conferences during the second and third year (up to 1000€ granted to successful applicants)

  • Tuition waiver
  • Option to take German language classes provided by the University of Tübingen during the first year
  • Accommodation offered in Tübingen student dormitories depending on availability
  • Opportunities to gain additional teaching and research experience as well as economic benefits from the University of Tübingen from the second year onward (depending on the ability of the applicant and the situation of the respective institute)

Application Process:
  • Jan 15: Application deadline. Applications must be handed in through the online application system of the University of Tübingen
  • by March 1: Successful applicants will be officially informed
  • by April 5: Invited applicants have to register with the CSC according to the regulations of the CSC.
  • by May 31: Final decisions about the allocation of scholarships will be made by the CSC
  • June: Program participants will be invited for a welcome seminar in Beijing
  • by Oct 1: Program participants arrive in Tübingen
  • Successful candidates must return to China upon completion of their studies.

How to Apply:
In order to apply you need to upload the following documents combined in 1 PDF
  • Cover/Motivation letter
  • CV
  • Research proposal
  • Academic transcripts
  • Proof of proficient skills in the required languages (if possible certificates, proficiency=comprehension of a wide range of demanding, longer texts as well as fluent and spontaneous expression allowing a flexible and effective language use for social, academic and professional purposes.)

For questions please contact the representation of the University of Tübingen in Beijing:
European Centre for Chinese Studies (ECCS)
Mr. Christian Buskühl
Peking University Pacific Science and Technology Development Center
52, Haidian Road, Haidian District, Beijing 100080 / Room 708
北京大学太平洋科技发展中心, 北京市 海淀区 海淀路52号 708室 / 邮编: 100080

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