MD/PhD student – Translational stem cell biology

The Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology in Utrecht is a research institute and hospital, focusing on providing pediatric oncology care, conducting scientific research and training professionals. It is a center that is not only unique in the Netherlands, but also in Europe. Groundbreaking and passionate are the keywords that determine the culture and appearance of the Princess Máxima Center. We go further than others have gone before, and we do that with heart and soul.

The research is based upon an ongoing clinical/translational study that aims to determine the long-term function of transplanted stem cells in survivors of childhood cancer. You will be involved in the entire scope of translational research – from patient recruitment to fundamental cell biology studies. You will assess clinical parameters, blood cell counts as well as molecular characteristics of these cells, and relate these to clinical exposures and outcome. You will coordinate study visits, analyze the clinical data and perform the required wet-lab experiments. You will work closely together with another PhD student, a clinical trial manager and a postdoc. Within the context of the study, you are encouraged to develop and test your own research hypotheses and ideas.

This is a 4-year project that is subsidized by KiKa. The results of this study are expected to contribute to more effective, safer stem cell transplantations, in order to improve the survival and quality of life of children with cancer.


We are looking for an enthusiastic, curious MD-PhD candidate who is eager to learn, has good organizational skills and excellent communication skills. You are creative and think out-of-the box. You have a mind of your own. You enjoy patient contact, and have affinity/experience in fundamental research. You work well in a dynamic environment. You enjoy collaborating with people from various disciplines: (trial) nurses, hemato-oncologists, researchers, and patients.


  • MD degree
  • Excellence in the Dutch language, required for patient recruitment
  • Demonstrated experience in research
  • Interest in translational childhood cancer research
  • Advanced in English speaking and writing
  • You enjoy working in and contributing to a multidisciplinary team
  • You have a creative mind, and you like to contribute to the development of our research group

The Belderbos Group

More than 30 research groups conduct research into childhood cancer in the Princess Máxima Center. Together, these groups cover a broad spectrum of expertise, tumor types and technologies. The Belderbos group is focused on hematopoietic stem cells. Our aim is to unravel the basic mechanisms by which human hematopoietic stem cells (re-)generate blood, and to translate this knowledge into clinical therapies to improve hematopoiesis in children with intrinsic or acquired bone marrow failure, or in those undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. In our group, we apply single-cell technology and functional assays to blood and bone marrow samples of pediatric patients. We collaborate closely with pediatric stem cell transplant physicians and several other research groups, both within the Princess Máxima Center and (inter-)nationally. Core values in our group are collaboration, curiosity and clinical impact.

We offer

  • A challenging position within a unique pediatric oncology center in the Netherlands and Europe
  • An opportunity to engage in the entire scope of translational research on childhood cancer
  • A possibility actively contribute to the overarching project, by generating and testing your own research hypotheses
  • You will start on a temporary position for the duration of one year, which –upon satisfactory completion of the first year- will be extended to a four-year PhD trajectory.
  • Your gross monthly salary will depend on experience and background, starting in scale 45 with 8,33% holiday allowance and 8,33 % end-of-year bonus.
  • The Princess Máxima Center operates according to the collective labor agreement ‘cao algemene ziekenhuizen’.

Apply for this position?

You can apply for this position until the 14th of October, by pressing the “apply” button on this screen. Potential candidates will be invited for interviews, which will be held in the beginning of November.

Contact and application

For more information about the vacancy, you are welcome to contact Dr. Mirjam Belderbos (

Acquisitie naar aanleiding van deze vacature wordt niet op prijs gesteld.

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