The existence of multicellular organisms depends on highly coordinated proliferation, growth, differentiation, and death of cells.
Defects in the controlled life cycle of cells in man usually result in severe defects or diseases. Uncontrolled cell proliferation, blocked cell differentiation, and/or inhibition of apoptosis often lead to the development of neoplastic cells and tumors. Differentiation defects cause malformations during embryonic development. In addition, pathogens like bacteria and viruses affect cell homeostasis often resulting in cell degeneration and cell death. The understanding of molecular mechanisms of the “normal life cycle” of a cell is a prerequisite to understand aberrations, which cause disease. This program includes projects related to cell proliferation, growth, differentiation, and death. In addition, several projects directly relate to diseases caused by intrinsic or induced aberrations of these cellular programs. Due to the broad spectrum of cell systems used (germ cells, muscle cells, neurons, hematopoietic cells, yeast) and topics covered (chromatin structure, signal transduction, transcription factors, protein/protein interaction, extracellular matrices, enzyme biogenesis, virology, molecular modeling) and techniques applied in the different groups, students enrolled in this program will have the opportunity to become familiar with many aspects of cellular and molecular biology. Another advantage of this program is that it is embedded in all the activities of the Vienna Biocenter, which houses not only the Max. F. Perutz Laboratories but also the IMP, the IMBA, and the GMI. The program will be run in conjunction with the international FWF-funded PhD programs at the Vienna Biocenter together with the IMP, IMBA, and GMI. Thus, students will be able to participate in the lectures and seminars offered by the Biocenter. In addition, the students will have the opportunity to meet world-class scientists who present invited talks at the Biocenter on a weekly basis.
Students have to fulfill the general criteria defined by the Medical University of Vienna for the admission to the PhD programs. In addition, candidates who have not been recruited via the general procedure at the Vienna Biocenter will be selected by a committee. This selection committee consists of 3 group leaders of this program and will be assembled ad-hoc. All candidates for the program must submit an informal written application including a C.V. and two letters of reference to the coordinator of the program. The applicant will be provided with 2 papers (selection of the papers will be made by the committee). The candidate will select one paper for her/his presentation at the interview. The interview will last 45 minutes and will be structured in the following manner. For the first 15 minutes the candidate will present the selected paper and will discuss its conclusions. During the second 15 minutes, the candidate will be asked to present her/his Diploma work. For both presentations the candidate will not be allowed to use PowerPoint or overheads, but may use a blackboard or flip chart. The last 15 minutes will be used for a general interview of the candidate. The final decision about the admission will be made by the committee after the interview, and the candidate will be informed immediately.
|Propedeutics||6 semester hours|
|Basic Lectures||4 semester hours|
|Thesis Seminars||8 semester hours|
|Journal Clubs and Progress reports||12 semester hours|