PhD-student: Single-cell dynamics within intestinal organoids

Date posted December 19, 2017
Type PhD positions

Organoids are miniature organs that can be grown in-vitro from adult stem cells. The aim of this project is to reveal the rules that govern stem cell renewal and differentiation in the intestinal stem cell compartment. We will determine dynamics of individual cells within intestinal organoids using confocal and light-sheet microscopy, cellular tracking analysis, and mathematical modeling. We will follow cell lineages over multiple generation in space and time as they form and maintain the characteristic intestinal crypt structures, as well as differentiation events using fluorescent labelling. These highly quantitative data will provide a unique insight into the dynamics of mammalian development at single-cell resolution. This is a joint project between the Tans and van Zon labs at AMOLF Amsterdam and is in collaboration with the Clevers lab at the Hubrecht institute, and the HUB institute in Utrecht.

About the group

Biophysics, Quantitative Developmental Biology


We are looking for an outstanding experimental physicist, chemist, or biologist with skills in handling complex data and an interest in fundamental questions about development, and a strong drive to excel in a competitive international environment. Prior experience with quantitative (light-sheet) microscopy, organoid/tissue culture or quantitative analysis of single-cell behavior is not required, but is considered a plus. You will need to meet the requirements for an MSc-degree, to ensure eligibility for a Dutch PhD examination.

Terms of employment

The position is intended as full-time (40 hours / week, 12 months / year) appointment in the service of the Netherlands Foundation of Scientific Research Institutes (NWO-I) for the duration of four years. After successful completion of the PhD research a PhD degree will be granted at one of the universities within the Netherlands. Several courses are offered, specially developed for PhD-students. AMOLF assists any new PhD-student with housing and visa applications and compensates their transport costs and furnishing expenses.

Contact info Sander Tans (Groupleader Biophysics) and Dr. Jeroen van Zon (Groupleader Quantitative Developmental Biology)
E-mail: or
Phone: +31 (0)20-754 7100

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