PhD Position Marie Skłodowska-Curie

Funded PhD Position with Academic & Industry Training 

Marie Skłodowska-Curie H2020 Innovative Training Networks
Ref. No. PQS-TOXIFATE-GA955830

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full time, fixed term position as Early-Stage Researcher/PhD student (ESR) with ProtoQSAR company in Valencia (Spain) in collaboration with the National University of Ireland Galway. The position, funded by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie H2020 Innovative Training Networks grant is available from November 2022. The appointment will be on a temporary basis for a maximum period of eighteen months (regular full-time employment contract). The ESR will be hired by ProtoQSAR and enrolled at NUI Galway.

Information on project/centre
A call for one PhD position with eighteen months funding is open under the supervision of Dr. Rafael Gozalbes of ProtoQSAR, Valencia, Spain and Dr Howard Fearnhead at NUI Galway. This position is part of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (MSCA-ITN), TOXIFATE, which aims to improve prediction of drug-induced muscle toxicity. TOXIFATE is a major interdisciplinary effort between cell biologists, toxicologists, and chemo- and bio-informaticians focused on improving toxicity prediction and training researchers for the emerging computational toxicology sector.

The central scientific objective is to understand quantitative relationships between the activation of cell-stress and cell-death pathways and the resulting cell-fate. This will be accomplished through the use of sophisticated in vitro models, high content microscopy and transcriptomics coupled to the development of new computational tools that allow modelling and prediction of cell-behaviour.

Job Description:
The successful candidate will participate in a European Industrial Doctorate programme and benefit from an international scientific network of high-profile academic and industry partners offering state-of-the-art research facilities, as well as an ambitious training plan that will be implemented through courses, outreach activities, participation in seminars and workshops for the development of scientific and transferable skills. The ESR will be supervised by an Industry-Academia supervisory team consisting of at least one supervisor from each sector. The ESR will receive an attractive salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for Early-Stage Researchers (

The successful candidate will:
• Participate in training in in vitro toxicology and cheminformatics.
• Develop and assess innovative means of modelling and predicting toxicity under the advice and training of academic and industry mentors.
• Participate in outreach activities, seminars and workshops for the development of scientific and transferable skills.

Skills required:
• Excellent communication and organisation skills.
• Fluent in spoken and written English.
• Demonstrable knowledge or basic background on chemoinformatics and molecular modelling.
• Scripting (Python) and/or programming (Java, C++) skills.

Essential Requirements:
• Have a B.Sc. or M.Sc. degree (1.1) in toxicology, pharmacology, bioinformatics or related field.
• Be within the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers (without a doctoral degree).
• Should not have resided or carried out main activity (studies, work, etc.) in Spain for more than 12 months in the 3 years prior to the recruitment date.

Desirable Requirements:
• Demonstrable knowledge and interest in medicinal chemistry and drug discovery.
• Strong analytical and problem-solving skills, ability to logically conceptualize and summarize the research findings.
• Ability to interact with colleagues and staff, and to communicate complex information clearly.
• Ability to organise resources, manage time and meet deadlines.

Remuneration is in line with EC rules for Marie Skłodowska-Curie ITN projects:

The contract with ProtoQSAR will be established for an eighteen-month period (which is the time covered by the grant).

Start date: Position is available from November 1, 2022

Further information on research and working at ProtoQSAR company is available at

For information on moving to Spain please see

For additional inquiries about this post, please email Please put reference number PQS-TOXIFATE-955830 in subject line of e-mail application.

To Apply:

Applications to include a covering letter, CV, and the contact details of three referees should be sent, via e-mail (in word or PDF only) to Dr Rafael Gozalbes,

Please put reference number PQS-TOXIFATE-955830 in subject line of e-mail application.

Closing date for receipt of applications is October 10th 2020

Interviews are planned to be held between October 11th and October 15th 2022.

All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment

ProtoQSAR SL is an equal opportunities employer.

We reserve the right to re-advertise or extend the closing date for this post.