Available Postdoc position on LOXIN variants at the Section for Metabolic Genetics, University of Copenhagen

Available Postdoc position on LOXIN variants at the Section for Metabolic Genetics, University of Copenhagen  -

Danish Diabetes Academy (DDA) and University of Copenhagen call for applications to a 3-year research project in LOXIN variants and sLox-1 measures as Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Risk. The project is expected to start September 1, 2018 or after agreement. 

Project “LOXIN variants and sLox-1 measures as Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Risk”


Lectin-like oxidized low-density lipoprotein receptor (LOX-1), a type II transmembrane protein, is a scavenger receptor up regulated during vascular inflammation. LOX-1 is expressed in various cell types including macrophages, endothelial and vascular smooth muscle cells.  LOX-1 binds several ligands including oxidized LDL promoting lipid accumulation, foam cell formation, production of reactive oxygen species, and endothelial cell functional abnormalities.  A soluble form of LOX-1 (sLox-1) results from proteolytic cleavage (by ADAM10 and ADAM17 proteases) of its extracellular domain that reflects total LOX-1 levels and represents a potential biomarker for cardiovascular (CV) risk.

Human polymorphisms in the gene encoding LOX-1 (OLR1) result in splice variants called LOXIN mutations resulting in the loss of the ligand binding domain and functions as a dominant negative (J Am Coll Cardiol. 2017 Jun 6;69(22):2759-2768; J Med Genet 2003;40:933–936).  It has been indicated that human carriers of the LOXIN mutation show a reduced propensity for myocardial infarction, but this needs to be substantiated. 

Our hypothesis is that subjects with high sLox-1 levels will show a propensity for increased CVD whereas LOXIN mutations will confer reduced CVD risk.  To date, association studies using either sLox-1 or LOXIN have not been conducted in large population cohorts.  

Key Questions

  1. Do LOXIN variant mutations show a reduced propensity for CVD disease (or even other chronic inflammatory diseases – such as T2D, acute coronary syndrome (ACS), lupus (SLE), etc.)?
  2. Are sLox-1 levels associated with increased CVD risk?
  3. Do circulating sLox-1 levels, when combined with classical CVD risk biomarkers, improve CV risk predictions?

The research must be carried out in the research group of Professor Torben Hansen under the Section for Metabolic Genetics, Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research (CBMR), and in close collaboration with MedImmune.  The project will be affiliated to an Academic Supervisor at CBMR and an Industrial Supervisor at MedImmune. 

Moreover, the candidate is expected to sign up for DDA membership and to be engaged in DDA educational activities

Required qualifications

Your educational background is MSc in Natural Sciencea, IT, Bioinformatics or equivalent, combined with a PhD degree and experience in data management and/ or project management.

You need excellent overview and coordination skills, as well as strong communication skills in order to understand the needs of collaborators with different scientific backgrounds.

You have the ability to work in a complex environment with many stakeholders and parallel projects without compromising the quality of your work.

In addition we expect you to:

  • Have experience with pipelines for handling large amounts of biological data
  • Have published scientific papers in the field of metabolic physiology, genetic epidemiology, bioinformatics or biological data analysis
  • Have excellent statistics skills
  • Be fluent in spoken and written English
  • Have experience with teaching and supervision of students
  • Have good collaborative skills with other scientists and technical staff
  • Want to work in an environment with high work tempo in periods

How to apply

The application, in English, must be submitted in one document to Danish Diabetes Academy per email: ouh.dda@rsyd.dk marked “Postdoc application_ LOXIN variants and sLox-1 measures as Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Risk”

Application deadline: August 10, 2018 at 23.59 (12:00 midnight)

Please include:

  • Motivated letter of application (max. one page)
  • Curriculum vita
  • Diplomas (Master and PhD degree or equivalent)
  • If available, description and documentation of teaching and supervision experience and qualifications – please describe and document: 
    • Experience with supervision of BSc and MSc students 
    • Teaching experience 
    • Formal pedagogical training
  • Complete publication list
  • Separate copies of 5 particularly relevant papers

Further information

Inquiries about the position can be made to
Head of Section, Professor Torben Hansen, torben.hansen@sund.ku.dk

For information about DDA and the collaboration with Medimmune, please contact
DDA Managing Director Tore Christiansen  tore.christiansen@rsyd.dk