PhD-candidate at the School for Mental Health and Neuroscience / Departments Intensive Care and Radiology & Nuclear Medicine

PhD-candidate at the School for Mental Health and Neuroscience / Departments Intensive Care and Radiology & Nuclear Medicine

Published Deadline Location
18 Jun 4 Jul Maastricht

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A PhD-student position for the project "ZoomCOVID: Zooming in on cerebral abnormalities in severely affected COVID-19 patients: a 3T and 7T MRI study"

Job description

Job description We invite applications for 1 PhD position in clinical neuroimaging at the departments Intensive Care and Radiology & Nuclear Medicine at the Maastricht University Medical Centre+, the Netherlands. The position is embedded in the School for Mental Health and Neuroscience (MHeNS) in the University of Maastricht. COVID-19 is an infectious disease, which in severe cases leads to intensive care unit (ICU) admission. One of its feared complications is brain injury. With the candidates work, we aim to contribute to the current understanding of the COVID-19 neuropathogenesis in severely affected ICU survivors linking MRI abnormalities and serial patients measurements during ICU admission (Maastricht Intensive Care COVID cohort, MaastrICCht). For this, novel MRI techniques will be advanced to detect abnormalities of the cerebral microvasculature and microstructure. This project will also involve scanning at ultrahigh field (7.0 Tesla), and important methods for this approach will be the measurement of blood-brain barrier leakage and glymphatic clearance. As a PhD-student you will be a team player within the MaastrICCht cohort, with a technical focus on all aspects pertaining to MR image acquisition in COVID survivors, computational modeling, and data analysis. You will be working in a stimulating interdisciplinary biomedical team including intensivists, MRI scientists, neuro-radiologists, neuropsychologists and other clinicians.


Maastricht University (UM)


Requirements The PhD is a combination of technological skills, team work, and epidemiological data analyses. Preferably, you have affinity with clinical and/or basic scientific research, are able to work in a multidisciplinary setting, you like complex problems, and have good skills in English writing. To communicate with patients and hospital employees, an adequate level of the Dutch language is required. A M.Sc. degree is required in biomedical engineering, technical medicine, computer science, electrical engineering, or other related fields of study. Experience with MRI, data analysis, and MATLAB programming is a strong advantage.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

Temporary employment for 4 years. The first year will be a probation period, after a positive assessment the position will be extended for another 3 years, which happens in the vast majority of cases.

Your salary would be € 2.395,- gross per month in the first year up to € 3.061,- gross per month in the fourth year according to the PhD-candidate salary scale. An 8% holiday and an 8.3% year-end allowance is also provided. Each year an evaluation will take place.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website > Support > UM employees.


Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 20,000 students and 4,700 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.


School for Mental Health and Neuroscience (MHeNS) is one of the internationally leading institutes on neuroscience research, and aims at advancing our understanding of brain-behavior relationships by adopting an integrated approach between the various disciplines in neuro- and behavioral science, medicine and the life sciences. The project is embedded in Divisions 1&3, and fits into the research lines ‘Imaging’, ‘Rehabilitation and Prevention’, and ‘Monitoring’, and the clinical theme ‘Cognition’ of the Brain Nerve Center of the MUMC.

Intensive Care Maastricht
Dr. Aries is a neurologist-intensivist, whose main scientific and clinical interests have been cerebral autoregulation, perfusion and blood pressure management in stroke, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) patients. He is currently leading an international project involving ‘optimal’ cerebral perfusion pressure in critically ill patients using continuous neuromonitoring information. The ICU Maastricht has contributed to the Dutch COVID-predict database with >4000 hospitalized patients ( and he participates with his colleagues on the ICU in a unique COVID ICU cohort with serial high detailed measurements focused on inflammation and coagulation (MaastrICCht Cohort, BMJopen 2020).

Brain Imaging Maastricht
eurovascular imaging and ultrahigh field are special areas interest of research in the department of Radiology & Nuclear Medicine at MUMC+. The neuroimaging research line of dr. Jansen at the Maastricht UMC+ focuses on state-of-the-art clinical neuroscience using advanced neurovascular and microstructural imaging techniques. The research has been published in the leading academic journals, including the Lancet Neurology, Diabetes Care, Neurology, Radiology, Cerebral Cortex, Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry, Neuroimage, and Magnetic Resonance in Medicine.

Currently, state-of-the art 1.5T, 3.0 Tesla Philips MR and Siemens PET-MRI systems are available at the MUMC+. The University of Maastricht hosts 7.0 Tesla and 9.4 Tesla MRI systems from Siemens.


  • PhD
  • Health
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2395—€3061 per month
  • University graduate
  • AT2021.100


Maastricht University (UM)

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Universiteitssingel 40, 6229 GR, Maastricht

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