PhD in Advanced Materials for Regenerative Spinal Disorders Treatment

PhD in Advanced Materials for Regenerative Spinal Disorders Treatment

Published Deadline Location
11 Jul 31 Aug Eindhoven
Are you eager to develop innovative regenerative fusion technologies to treat back pain?
Are you inspired to push the boundaries on engineering biomaterials to address medicine’s future needs?

Job description

Back pain is among the top ten diseases causing the greatest burden on society in terms of years lived with disability. It is estimated that 30 to 40% of these cases are attributed to intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration. Currently, there are no satisfactory treatments for IVD degeneration. If analgesics and physical therapy fail to control the pain, operative treatment can be considered in some cases, where the involved spinal segments are fused using metal/polymer cages. Such spinal fusion operations are very effective in relieving patients' pain, but they are not always successful, sometimes leading to delayed fusions or non-unions. Our goal is to develop an innovative solution for spinal fusion using a 3D printed bioresorbable ceramic-based cage that is osteoinductive, load-bearing, and can counteract local inflammation. The newly created implant will be tested in vitro and in an in vivo animal model to move one step closer towards translation to human clinical applications. Your aim will be to design, fabricate, and characterize a subject-specific cage implant that promotes spinal fusion through mechanical stimulation while providing adequate mechanical strength until complete vertebrae fusion. To do this, you will focus on modeling the mechanobiology of the native tissue using integrated computational and experimental methods and translate those findings into innovative regenerative designs and material implants that promote fast and complete spinal fusion. You will contribute to a large Dutch-Brazilian research program - BioFusion - to research engineered biomaterials for spinal fusion You will closely collaborate and spend some time at our partner organizations at KU Leuven (Belgium) and UNESP - Universidade Estadual Paulista, School of Engineering (Brazil).

About the group

You will be enrolled at Eindhoven University of Technology within the Biomaterials Design and Processing and Orthopedics groups. Our mission is to develop novel treatment strategies for an aging and active population. We combine advanced biomaterials and manufacturing methods, such as Additive Manufacturing and Bioprinting, with in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo platforms, as well as engineering methods like high-resolution imaging and computational modeling. Our goal is to enhance understanding of musculoskeletal tissues and create regenerative treatments. We are part of the Regenerative Materials and Engineering cluster in the Department of Biomedical Engineering The department offers Bachelor's and Master's programs linked to research areas such as Chemical Biology, Biomaterials, and Biomechanics, with over 800 students and 200 academic staff. Our inclusive, collaborative campus fosters connections and excellence in research and education.


Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e)


We are accepting applications from enthusiastic and highly talented candidates who meet the following requirements:
  • A master's degree (Second Cycle qualification) in Biomedical engineering, Mechanical engineering, Material Science and engineering, or related discipline.
  • A solid background in continuum mechanics and biomechanics.
  • A strong interest in computational mechanics, mechanobiology and multi-scale material modelling.
  • Experience with bone engineering, inorganic biomaterials and Additive Manufacturing is preferred.
  • Excellent programming (e.g. Python, Matlab) and data analysis skills.
  • Strong motivation to do excellent, original, fundamental research.
  • Team player and able to work in a dynamic, interdisciplinary, and international context.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills. Note that there is no Dutch language requirement.
  • Motivated to develop your teaching skills and coach students.

Conditions of employment

We offer a meaningful job in a dynamic, stimulating and ambitious team environment.
  • A full-time employment contract for four years, with an intermediate performance review after nine months.
  • Salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, paid pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, scale P (min. €2,770 max. €3,539).
  • Additionally, an annual holiday allowance equal to 8% of your yearly salary, and a year-end allowance of 8.3% of your annual salary.
  • A broad package of fringe benefits, including access to an excellent technical infrastructure, assistance with moving expenses, and participation in savings schemes.
  • Family-friendly initiatives, such as an international spouse program, on-campus children daycare, and sports facilities.
  • An allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • Cutting-edge research focused on bone fractures and will receive innovative multidisciplinary and multisectoral training from experienced supervisors in both clinical and academic fields.
  • Be part of an international team of biomaterials and spine research experts and a large network of PhD students.
  • Secondments at KU Leuven (Belgium) and UNESP - Universidade Estadual Paulista, School of Engineering (Brazil).
  • A structured training program, which includes a combination of soft skill courses, targeted workshops, social events, and networking opportunities (learning process).
  • A Staff Immigration Team and a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) for international candidates.

Additional information

About us

Eindhoven University of Technology is an internationally top-ranking university in the Netherlands that combines scientific curiosity with a hands-on attitude. Our spirit of collaboration translates into an open culture and a top-five position in collaborating with advanced industries. Fundamental knowledge enables us to design solutions for the highly complex problems of today and tomorrow. 

Curious to hear more about what it's like as a PhD candidate at TU/e? Please view the video.


Do you recognize yourself in this profile and would you like to know more?
Please contact the hiring manager Miguel Dias Castilho, email

Visit our website for more information about the application process or the conditions of employment. You can also contact HR Services, email

Are you inspired and would like to know more about working at TU/e? Please visit our career page.


We invite you to submit a complete application by using the apply button.
The application should include a:
  • Cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position.
  • Curriculum vitae, including a list of your publications and the contact information of three referees.
  • Copies of degree and academic transcripts (with grades and rankings), for both the Bachelor's and Master's degrees. Academic records not written in English should be accompanied by a translation into English (it can be either an official translation or self-translation). If the candidate has not been awarded the qualifying degree yet, he/she should provide a document proving the expected date of award.

Applications must be in English. 

We look forward to receiving your application and will screen it as soon as possible. The vacancy will remain open until the position is filled.


  • PhD
  • Engineering
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • University graduate
  • V50.7612


Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e)

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De Rondom 70, 5612 AP, Eindhoven

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Application procedure

Application procedure

Make sure to apply no later than 31 Aug 2024 23:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).