Research at the IRB focuses on immunology, particularly on the mechanisms of host defense. Additional activities are in fields relevant to biomedicine such as DNA repair, rare diseases, structural, computational and cell biology. Emphasis is given to studies of human biology in health and disease, since these may lead to a better understanding of pathophysiology and to novel therapeutic approaches to infectious, inflammatory, degenerative and tumour diseases.
Scientists at the IRB pursue their investigations by using a variety of state-of-the-art approaches, for which the IRB provides all necessary high-end technological platforms. The scientific equipment available at the IRB enables top-notch investigations and attracts international collaborations.
The Institute offers high-level scientific education and training opportunities for young researchers (Predoc, PhD, Dr. med., MD-PhD and Postdoc) through the Università della Svizzera italiana (USI) and other Swiss and foreign Universities. Short internships and experimental Master’s theses are also possible.
The PhD program is carried out in collaboration with USI and other Universities, where the students are formally enrolled. The experimental work is carried out at the IRB, under the direct supervision of a Group Leader. The program includes seminars, lessons, summer courses and an annual retreat provided by the IRB.
An International Lecture Course is organised every year as part of the IRB International PhD Program in Immunology, Cell Biology and Biochemistry. Lectures are given by visiting experts of international reputation. Currently the IRB counts over 35 PhD students, and since the beginning of the program over 120 PhD theses were successfully defended. At present, the PhD program coordinator is Silvia Monticelli.
Applications to the IRB PhD Program have no official deadline: please directly contact the Group Leader of the laboratory you would be interested in joining for doctoral work, explaining your motivation to pursue training with a PhD and the reasons for interest in the specific area of research. Include your complete CV and names of references.
The PhD program is possible thanks to the generosity of the Gustav & Ruth Jacob Foundation.
In collaboration with USI and other Universities, the IRB offers the possibility to perform undergraduate internships and the practical part of the Master’s thesis in one of its research groups. Depending on their home University, students join laboratories of the IRB for up to 12 months to execute their research.
Since 2021 the IRB hosts young individuals that after obtaining a master’s degree from a recognised Swiss or foreign university are interested in advancing their scientific training and possibly embarking on a research career by obtaining a doctorate (PhD) at the IRB or at a similar institution.
In 2023, the Comel Foundation helped the creation of a predoctoral program, whereby selected Swiss and international candidates receive fellowship support for a maximum of 6 months. Comel predoctoral fellows are trained in one or more IRB laboratories, attend the Institute’s PhD lectures and the Monday Noon Discussions.
To submit your fellowship application, please send to the Grant Office Team (firstname.lastname@example.org): (i) letter describing your motivation to pursuing a research career, the prospected time frame of your stay at the IRB, and the name of at least 2 IRB laboratories of interest; (ii) your CV, including contact information of at least one reference; (iii) copies of bachelor’s and master’s transcripts and degrees. Only candidates from CH or EU member state are eligible.
Applications can be submitted at any time (no deadline). Candidates with positive evaluation will be contacted within 2 months.
Group leaders of the IRB organise and teach theoretical and practical courses on topics mostly related to immunology. The courses are open to students at USI and other Universities. Universities typically recognise participation to these courses by awarding students with credits.
November 6-10, 2023: 1st Microsurgery Course and Experimental Research Techniques in Murine Models. More information: email@example.com.