PhD Position in Subcellular Ca2+ Signalling Microdomains Regulating Cardiomyocyte Growth and Function

Catholic University of Leuven Department of Cardiovascular Sciences

We are looking for a new member to come and join our team to pursue research towards a PhD in cardiac calcium signalling and cell remodelling. This project is funded by the KULeuven-Melbourne Global PhD programme and provides an unique opportunity to perform multi-disciplinary research at two world leading universities. Our lab focusses on identifying mechanisms underlying cardiac structural, contractile and electrical remodeling processes and how these contribute to cardiovascular disease. Our approach is multiscale, spanning from the cellular to the organ level, molecular mechanisms, left and right ventricular mechanics and impact of different interventions. To these ends, we combine, transcriptomics, epigenomics and single cell biology, advanced imaging, including super resolution imaging, electrophysiology and in vivo imaging. We employ cell models including induced pluripotent cells, rodent models of disease, preclinical porcine models and human tissues.


The aim of this project is to identify mechanisms that allow the signalling mediator Ca2+ to act with specificity to simultaneously regulate discrete functions such as growth, differentiation and contraction in primary and induced pluripotent cardiac myocytes. To these ends,a multidisciplinary approach will be used involving cellbiology, genetically encoded Ca2+ reporters, Ca2+imaging, super resolution microscopy, mathematical modelling and AI. In this project, we are particularly interested in how Ca2+ signals indifferent cellular sub-compartments are involved in regulating cardiomyocyte contraction vs growth, differentiation and gene expression.

The laboratory is highly international consisting of post-doctoral scientists, PhD students and technicians. The lab will support you in gaining expertise in necessary areas and through our excellent local and international collaborators and core facilities, you will have access to additional expertise and tools.

Our lab is embedded in the Department of Cardiovascular Sciences situated in the Biomedical Campus of KU Leuven,Belgium. It has the entire range of competences from basic science, over pre-clinical modeling to applied clinical and epidemiological research, taking a systems approach to the complexity of cardiovascular disorders.

The University:

KU Leuven offers a stimulating environment for international students and support for junior scientists to achieve their ambitions and in career development.


  • A masters in lifesciences/physiology with an interest in quantitative methods or a masters in engineering/mathematics with an interest in cell biology.
  • You are motivated, have an enquiring mind and are excited by science.
  • You enjoy collaborating with your colleagues and externally to scientific advance.
  • You area team player with excellent written and oral communication skills in English
  • You enjoy presenting your data to collaborators and to the community at scientific meetings.
  • You perform your research to the highest standards and integrity. 


  • A fully funded Joint PhDstudentship.
  • A stimulating and supportive environment in which you acquire expertise as a multidisciplinary researcher.
  • Opportunity to spend 1-1.5y of your PhD in a lab in Melbourne (KUL student), or Leuven (Melbourne student).


Please send your CV,motivation letter and 2 recommendation letters to Prof. Dr. H. LlewelynRoderick, Email: ( Please also apply via the online portal of KULeuven.

You can apply for this job no later than May 07, 2021 via the
KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at
  • Employment percentage: Voltijds
  • Location: Leuven
  • Apply before: May 7, 2021
  • Tags: Cardiovasculaire wetenschappen