Doctoral student, Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine



The North changes the world – more sustainable, more intelligent, more humane. We, at the University of Oulu, work as part of the international science community to produce new scientific information and science-based solutions. We are committed to educate future pioneers to build a more sustainable, intelligent and humane world. Creating new, taking responsibility and succeeding together are values that build a strong foundation for all our actions. We offer a working environment where individuals can cultivate their skills, do meaningful work, and develop professionally. Our university’s several specialized research and service units enable extensive and diverse development and career opportunities for experts in various fields.

We are looking for a Doctoral student in Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine for a part-time (50%), fixed-term two-year position at the University of Oulu at the Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine.


This research project focuses on the interplay between hypoxia signalling, metabolism and fibrosis. The selected student will work under supervision of professors Peppi Karppinen and Terhi Piltonen. The aim of the project is to reveal the causality and relations between these pathways using the sex-hormone driven polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) as a disease model. This is a common syndrome in women affecting about 10% the female population. Fibrosis in liver, ovary and adipose tissue is associated with PCOS and may contribute to high comorbidity among affected women. Our main interests are the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) and its regulating HIF prolyl 4-hydroxylases. We use mainly molecular and cell biology methods as well as gene-modified mice and preclinical disease models to understand how these pathways interact. This is a project with multidisciplinary approach aiming to answer important clinical questions. We offer a research environment with excellent technological facilities and a motivating and supporting community. More information can be found on our web pages:




To successfully occupy the position, the candidate must possess a degree entitling them to obtain a doctoral degree (MSc or equivalent) preferably in the field of biochemistry, molecular or cell biology, medical sciences or related fields. Degree must have been completed before starting the position and must not be obtained more than 5 years ago. License to conduct animal experiments within the EU is required (proven by a course diploma showing competence according to EU Directive 2010/63, Article 23). Prior experience on animal experiments, preclinical disease models and knowledge on molecular and cellular biology as well as histological and imaging methods are an advantage. Ability to pursue independent research, work productively in a team as well as excellent writing and fluency in English are expected.

When assessing the applicant’s qualifications, issues to be considered will include study grades, research experience, possible scientific publications, activity in the scientific community, familiarity with the research field and teamwork skills. The applicant is expected to actively take part in co-applying for funding during the two-year period.

The applicant will be enrolled to University of Oulu Graduate School, so the applicant must fulfill the requirements for admission: https://www.oulu.fi/uniogs/requirements_for_admission .

What we offer

  • You will become a part of a highly talented research group, working on strategically and globally significant research area
  • You will receive support not only from your team and supervisor, but also from university´s wide variety of support services, so that you can excel in your studies and research.
  • The salary will be in accordance with the Finnish universities salary system (for teaching and research personnel): level 2. In addition, a salary component based on personal work performance will be paid (maximum of 50 % of the job-specific component). Further information regarding the salary can be asked from professor Karppinen and professor Piltonen. 
  • Other benefits: The successful candidate will receive full benefits provided by the University of Oulu to university employees, including free time corresponding to holidays and free occupational health care services.


Applications must be submitted using the electronic application form by April 11, 2021 (23:59 Finnish local time), with the following attachments as three separate pdf files:

1)      Complete CV containing contact information of at least two referees (Max. size limit of the attachment: 5 Mbytes)

2)      Motivation letter describing prior knowledge and research interests and career plans (maximum 1 page).

3)      Certificates/Diplomas: Scanned electronic copies of diplomas and transcripts of the records of relevant previous degrees. If the original documents are not in English, Finnish or Swedish, each document must be accompanied by an official certified translation into English or Finnish. (Max. size limit of the attachment: 2 Mbytes). Additionally, a certificate of sufficient language skills in English and/or Finnish are required for those who have not completed a secondary or higher education degree in the Finnish language (more info, see: https://www.oulu.fi/uniogs/requirements_for_admission, 4. Language skills)

Applications sent by email will not be considered.

Other relevant information

The eligible applicants fitting best in the research profile expected for the position may be invited to an on-site or remote interview. All applicants will be notified when the selection process is completed. The earliest start date is 3rd of May 2021. A trial period of six months is applied in the position. 

For Further Information Contact:  

Prof. Peppi Karppinen, e-mail: peppi.karppinen (at) oulu.fi

Prof. Terhi Piltonen, e-mail: terhi.piltonen (at) oulu.fi