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CSC-Tübingen PhD Program: Project 03/2020:
Targeting specific pathomechanisms as treatment strategy for an inherited neurodegenerative disorder

Topic Description:You will target specific pathomechanisms as treatment strategy for an inherited neurodegenerative disorder called Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3). While the affected protein ataxin-3 is normally a cytoplasmic protein, one hallmark of the disease is the for¬mation of protein aggregates in the nucleus of neurons. We recently identified this nucleo¬cyto¬plasmic shuttling of ataxin-3 to be critical for the disease: Pathologically expanded ataxin-3 remains harm¬less as long as the protein is not transported to the nucleus. Controlling these transport mecha¬nisms will be a novel treatment strategy for SCA3 and is the goal of the proposed project.

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

Supervising Professors:Thorsten Schmidt, Ph.D, Hon.D.
About the Supervisors:Thorsten Schmidt is the group leader of the SCA3 research group in Tuebingen (http://www.medgen-tuebingen.de/en/f-sca3.html) and head of the institute’s research laboratory. Dr. Schmidt holds a Diploma degree in Biochemistry and a PhD in Molecular Biology and works since more than 20 years in the field of inherited, neurodegenerative disorders. His 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. Dr. Schmidt successfully supervised numerous students from many different scientific fields and countries (including China). You will work in the 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 theoretical background of the project. Regular meetings both with your supervisor and other scientists of your research group are the platform for exchange and interaction. Trainings ensure your recurrent 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.

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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.

Aims:

  • 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

Funding:
  • 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)

Benefits:
  • 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)
北京大学欧洲中国研究合作中心
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
md@eccspku.org



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