PhD student Tumor immunology of pediatric Hodgkin lymphoma

We are looking for an ambitious and curious PhD candidate to study the Hodgkin cell/microenvironment interactions to identify novel therapeutic targets for pediatric Hodgkin lymphoma in our newly developed in vitro culture system.

What to expect?

You will apply our recently developed ex vivo 3D culture model for pediatric Hodgkin lymphoma (HL). This model will enable you to culture primary malignant Hodgkin lymphoma cells (HRS cells) together with autologous benign cells from the tumor microenvironment. Using this culture model we have found that CD4+ T cells sustained survival of HRS cells and have successfully tested therapeutic compounds. Your research aim will be to disrupt the interactions between HRS and CD4+ T cells and to inhibit signaling pathways activated upon cell-cell interaction with the ultimate aim to discover novel, less-toxic HL treatment strategies. To reach this aim you will characterize HRS/CD4+ T cell interactions, evaluate the consequences of disrupting them and test effects of inhibiting signaling pathways activated upon HRS/CD4+ T cell interactions.

Within this KWF-funded project you will perform cell biology and immunology laboratory research. Your project will be translational at the forefront of discovering novel HL treatments. You will reveal your results by publishing in international journals and will present them at conferences. During the project you will collaborate with other research groups and clinical experts in the field of pediatric HL. The project will result in a written PhD thesis followed by a public defense of this thesis.


The successful candidate will be an enthusiastic and highly motivated team player to strengthen our research groups. You are passionate about tumor immunology research and driven by scientific curiosity. You have a Master’s degree in Biology, scientific expertise, affinity with laboratory (immunology) research, and excellent verbal and written communication skills in English. To collaborate with other research groups and clinical experts you demonstrate good interpersonal and organizational skills.

Our job offer

We offer you a position based on 36 hours a week. You will initially be contracted for the period of one year, after which the contract may be extended for an additional period of three years. Your gross monthly salary will depend on experience and background, starting in scale 45-6  with a salary of €3.195,- gross a month for a fulltime working week (36 hours). You also receive 8,33% holiday allowance and 8,33% end-of-year bonus. The Princess Máxima Center operates according to the collective labor agreement ‘cao ziekenhuizen’.

Work environment

Dr. Friederike Meyer-Wentrup chairs the Máxima lymphoma group. In this group scientific, diagnostic and clinical experts collaborate closely to discover novel ways to improve pediatric lymphoma treatment.

This project is a collaboration with dr. Victor Peperzak, principal investigator the Center for Translational Immunology (CTI) of the UMC Utrecht, and expert in the biology of B-cell malignancies. Our work environment is open and agile. We create opportunities for all team members and are dedicated to scientific discovery.  

The Princess Máxima Center

The Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology is a research hospital concentrating healthcare, research, and education of pediatric cancer in a single location in Utrecht. The institute aims to provide the highest level of care for all children with cancer and has the ambition to cure all children of cancer and improve quality of life. The center brings together the best possible care and scientific research, creating a unique interdisciplinary institute for pediatric oncology in Europe.


Are you our new colleague? We are looking forward to meeting you! You can apply directly by clicking on the orange button on this page. Do you have any questions or would you like more information about this position? Please contact Dr. Friederike Meyer-Wentrup (project leader). Friederike will be happy to tell you more!

Acquisition as a result of this vacancy is not appreciated.

Apply now