PhD student position in clinical trial on anti-viral effects of macrolide treatment

A PhD position is available in the Respiratory Research Unit of the Pulmonary Dept. at Bispebjerg Hospital, Copenhagen.

The project

The AZIMUNE project answers an important question regarding macrolide treatment in asthma and COPD: How does it work, and who does it work in? AZIMUNE is an ambitious translational research project conducted in a strong collaboration between internationally recognized research groups with asthma and COPD, immunology and microbiology.

Long-term treatment with low-dose macrolide antibiotics (e.g. Azithromycin) has been proven effective in preventing exacerbations in asthma and COPD. The underlying mechanisms of this effect are unknown, but could be related to an improved immune defense against virus, as well as a reduction in the airway inflammation caused by the virus and/or microbial community. Macrolides do not work in all patients, and it is important to identify subgroups of patients most likely to respond.

The AZIMUNE project, an investigator initiated randomized placebo-controlled trial, will describe the effects of macrolide treatment on the anti-viral immune defense in asthma and COPD, as well as the anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial effects. This will be primarily studied by bronchoscopy acquired bronchial epithelial cell responses to in vitro challenges with rhinovirus. The project is a collaboration between Bispebjerg Hospital and the university of Lund (Sweden).

We offer

The successful candidate will be part of a dynamic research team consisting of pulmonologists, post-docs, basic scientists, and other PhD students.

The candidate will have the opportunity to develop skills in respiratory medicine ranging from performing lung function tests to bronchoscopies.

The applicant will take active part in research seminars and conferences.

Responsibilities and tasks

The PhD student will be responsible for preparing the study protocol, recruitment of patients, the logistics of the trial, and actively participate in non-invasive diagnostics as well as bronchoscopy studies.


The candidate (MD) will have qualifications, experience and/or strong interest within one or several of the following areas:

    Minimal 1 year clinical experience
    Research experience
    Have a genuine interest in respiratory medicine and research
    Be independent and ambitious
    Possess good interpersonal skills
    Have great organizational capacities

Formal requirements

To be accepted for the position, it is required to have a degree as - or considered to be equivalent to - a Danish Medical Doctor and have an authorization to work as a Danish Medical Doctor. You must also be proficient in Danish.

It is a prerequisite that the PhD candidate is enrolled as a PhD student at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.

Terms of salary and employment

The salary and appointment terms will be as a clinical assistant according to the Agreement for Junior Doctors as set out in Regionernes Lønnings- og Takstnævn. The candidate will be employed at the Respiratory Research Unit, Bispebjerg Hospital.

Supervisor/start date

The primary supervisor will be Professor and Senior Consultant Celeste Porsbjerg. In addition, Post-doc and Senior Consultant Therese Lapperre will co-supervise the candidate.

The position is full-time, starting summer 2019.


The application must be in English and include the following documents/attachments:

    Motivated letter of application
    Curriculum vitae
    A certified/signed copy of MD certificate
    A complete list of publications and conference presentations

The application must be submitted electronically through the link.


For further questions please contact Therese Lapperre, e-mail:

Assessment of the applicants will be made on the basis of an interview with the study team.

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Oprettet d: 20/02/2019
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