PhD student psychiatric genetics

PhD student psychiatric genetics

Published Deadline Location
26 Mar 17 Apr Amsterdam

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We invite an enthusiastic and ambitious PhD student to join our interdisciplinary team. The candidate will take part in an innovative research project focusing on identifying BiOmarkers tO perSonalise Treatment of depression (BOOST depression).

Job description

Depression poses a huge burden to patients, their families, and society as a whole. Current treatments of depression are provided on a trial and error basis, and only benefit a minority of patients. The BOOST depression consortium is a large-scale multi-center project funded by The Dutch Research Council. The broader aim of this project is use artificial intelligence to develop biomarkers that can predict treatment outcomes, selecting the best treatment for each patient. We hope that we can double the success of treatments, shorten treatment paths, and reduce healthcare costs.

Within the Boost depression consortium we are seeking for a PhD student that will assist with the data collection at Amsterdam UMC, location University of Amsterdam, and whose research will focus on improving genetic and epigenetic markers related to the treatment of depression.

This PhD project encompasses two key responsibilities:
  1. Data Collection: As a PhD student, you will be actively involved in gathering data from patients (~200) who are receiving treatment for depression. You will be assisted by a Research assistant. This data collection process will encompass a variety of techniques and methodologies. You will be responsible for acquiring MRI measurements and conducting EEG recordings. Additionally, you will administer questionnaires to patients and collect buccal swabs for DNA genotyping and methylation analysis. Comprehensive training will be provided to equip you with the necessary skills and knowledge for these tasks.
  2. Statistical Genetics Research: The second crucial aspect of your role will be to conduct advanced statistical genetics research. The PhD student will use large-scale existing genetic and epigenetic datasets and advanced genetics methodology to identify relevant genetic and epigenetic biomarkers that can improve the treatment of depression. The PhD student will co-develop the research projects, analyse large-scale data, write up scientific manuscripts, present at conferences, and communicate with stakeholders, and the four year project will result in a thesis. In particular, you will be conducting innovative genetic analyses using existing databases and biobanks.


Amsterdam UMC


  • A MSc degree in the field of epidemiology, biomedical sciences, bioinformatics, neurosciences, psychology, or a related and relevant discipline;
  • Interested in the project’s topic and motivated to engage with key stakeholders;
  • Prior experience in data analysis using R is desirable (support will be available);
  • Affinity with quantitative statistics and big data analysis;
  • Proficiency in English and Dutch is required.

The following documents must be supplied with your application: resume, cover letter and your grade list.

Conditions of employment

  • A jump start to your career in research!
  • The opportunity to work on large-scale international data-sets and receive trained in the most cutting edge epidemiological and genetic methods
  • The intended start date for the project is mid 2024.
  • The position is for 4 years. We first offer a fixed term contract for 1 year, which under normal circumstances will be prolonged with 3 years.
  • Salary scale OIO: € 2,901 - € 3,677 bruto with a full time appointment (depending on education and experience).
  • In addition to a good basic salary, we offer 8.3% end-of-year bonus and 8% holiday allowance.
  • Pension is accrued at Be Frank.
  • In addition to excellent accessibility by public transport, AMR also has a sufficient number of parking spaces for employees.
  • An active personnel association and the Young Amsterdam UMC association, both of which organize fun (sports) activities and events.

For an overview of all our other terms of employment, Read all working agreements at Amsterdam UMC


Amsterdam UMC

You will become part of 2 research groups embedded in the
Department of Psychiatry. The Genetic Epidemiology research group of Prof. dr. Karin Verweij conducts genetic research on a wide range of complex traits, including mental illness, substance use, socio-economic outcomes.

The Neuroimaging in Psychiatry group of Prof. dr. Guido van Wingen conducts neuroimaging research to investigate the neural mechanisms of psychiatric disorders and their treatment in mood and anxiety disorders. We have a very open and accessible culture and we encourage everyone to bring in their own ideas.


  • PhD
  • Health
  • max. 36 hours per week
  • €2901—€3677 per month
  • University graduate
  • 11273



Meibergdreef 9, 1105AZ, Amsterdam

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