PhD Fellowship on Microbial Electrosynthesis

The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability (CFB) at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) would like to invite applications for a PhD position starting in the beginning of 2014 under the supervision of Senior Researcher Tian Zhang. 

Project description

Microbial electrosynthesis (MES) is a novel biotechnology process in which microorganisms reduce CO2 to produce chemical commodities using only electrical current. One of the aspects of MES that can be significantly optimized is the transfer of electrons from the cathode to the microbe. 

The PhD student will mainly develop strategies to wire microbial cells to the cathode using conductive biomaterials. 

We expect that this approach will facilitate the electron transfer from the cathode to the microbe and increase the overall productivity of MES. The PhD student will also work on the characterization of the electron transfer mechanisms of MES between the cathode and the microbe. 


  • Master degree or equivalent academic qualifications in biochemistry, molecular biology, microbiology, or a closely related field.
  • Skills and experience in bacterial physiology, cell fractionation, proteins and/or cell components purification
  • Attachment of biomaterial to inorganic surface will be preferred.
  • Good command of English is essential.

Approval and Enrolment
The scholarships for the PhD degree are subject to academic approval, and the candidates will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes of DTU. For information about the general requirements for enrolment and the general planning of the scholarship studies, please see the DTU PhD Guide.

The assessment of the applicants will be made by Dr. Tian Zhang.

Salary and appointment terms
The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The allowance will be agreed with the relevant union.

The period of employment is 3 years.

Further information
Further information may be obtained from Dr. Tian Zhang,

We must have your online application by 20 December 2013. To apply click on the Apply button below and please open the link “Apply online,” fill in the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. Applications must include:

  • A letter explaining the applicant´s background and reasons for applying
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Letters of recommendation sent directly by three referees
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply. 

The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability is an international research center at the Technical University of Denmark funded by a grant of 1.1 billion DKK from the Novo Nordisk Foundation. The Center conducts research in metabolic engineering of cell factories, in silico systems biology, metagenomics and plant biochemistry with the purpose of developing new processes and technologies that can support a more sustainable bio-based production of valuable chemicals in the future. The Center brings together some of the world’s leading researchers in the field and possesses the advanced equipment and facilities required for achieving its ambitious research goals. Impact on society by innovation has a high priority and the Center collaborates worldwide with biotech companies and chemical industries to facilitate the dissemination and exploitation of its results. Additional information can be found at  

DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and public service. Our staff of 5,000 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society; and our 9,000 students are educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent academic university collaborating globally with business, industry, government, and public agencies.

Also Read  PhD Scholarships (January 2014 Intake)

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