Ghent University is a world of its own. Employing more than 8,000 people, it is actively involved in education and research, management and administration, as well as technical and social service provision on a daily basis. It is one of the largest, most exciting employers in the area and offers great career opportunities. With 11 faculties and more than 80 departments offering state-of-the-art study programmes grounded in research in a wide range of academic fields, Ghent University is a logical choice for its staff and students.


The BVDK Lab is developing personalized vaccines for lung cancer patients. We recently finalized a phase I clinical trial in collaboration with the Dept of Lung Diseases showing the induction of strong immunological responses against selected tumor-specific epitopes after vaccination. Currently we are further optimizing this strategy in two different ways. (1) Vaccine composition: we are optimizing an mRNA vaccine in collaboration with the Dept of Pharmacology. (2) We are optimizing the selection of tumor-specific epitopes using state of the art bioinformatic tools and proteomics in collaboration with the Genetics Department (prof B Menten).

Job opening concerns a PhD student position for the development of new strategies to identify strong tumor-specific epitopes using bioinformatic analyses on total RNA and genomic DNA sequencing data of tumor biopsies and blood samples of patients. Optimization of methods for small patient tumor biopsies. Prof Menten and Vandekerckhove are the promotors.


  • Collect and process (RNA DNA isolation) surgical patient material for sequencing
  • Data analysis to identify expressed point mutation, indel, intron retention, aberrant transcripts,…

Job profile


  • You hold a Master’s degree in a relevant discipline (medicine, biostatistics, bioengineer, biomedical sciences, biotechnology)
  • Passion for improving therapies for cancer
  • Creative, enthusiastic and hard working
  • Familiar with R, Python


  • You will join a research team focused on immunotherapy of lung cancer patients
  • You will be encouraged to obtain your PhD degree on that subject.
  • We offer you a contract of 4 yrs. Your contract will start as soon as possible.
  • Your remuneration will be similar to FWO bursaries. Click here for more information about our salary scales.
  • All Ghent University staff members enjoy a number of benefits, such as a wide range of training and education opportunities, 36 days of holiday leave (on an annual basis for a full-time job) supplemented by annual fixed bridge days, a bicycle allowance and eco vouchers. Click here for a complete overview of all the staff benefits (in Dutch).

How to apply

For further information or to apply (include motivation letter, curriculum vitae with study results and contact information of two potential referees), please contact : Prof. Bart Vandekerkchove ( or Prof. Bjorn Menten (

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