Postdoc in cryo-EM method development

Applied physicsBioPhysicsStructural biology
Sep 01, 2023 21:59:00 GMT+00:00
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  • FACULTY / DEPARTMENT- Faculty of Applied Sciences
  • JOB TYPE- Postdoc Positions
  • SCIENTIFIC FIELD- Natural sciences
  • HOURS PER WEEK- 38-40
  • SALARY- € 2,960.00 – € 4,670.00

Job description

We are looking for a highly motivated postdoctoral fellow to join the research group of Arjen Jakobi at the Department of Bionanoscience at the Kavli Institute of Nanoscience and Delft University of Technology ( Our laboratory studies dynamic biomolecular processes in their native cellular environment using an approach that integrates cryogenic electron microscopy / tomography ( cryo-EM / ET ) imaging with single-molecule biophysics, protein biochemistry and cell biology. We also develop and apply new instruments and methods for imaging biological molecules at atomic resolution.

In this 3-year position you will become part of a larger research consortium supported by an NWO-OCENW-XL grant to study microtubule structure and dynamics in vitro and in situ using a combination or cryo-ET and advanced ( cryo- ) fluorescence microscopy. Drawing on the unique possibilities of MEMS technology, your specific task will be to develop a new high-speed sample preparation method for correlative snapshot imaging of dynamic molecular processes by ( single-molecule ) fluorescence microscopy and cryo-ET. This requires designing and implementing optical and precision mechanical components, prototyping of MEMS supports, automating target localization, and establishing efficient workflows for correlative imaging at ultrafast timescales. Using sophisticated in vitro reconstruction assays,you will apply this method in combination with cryo-fluorescence microscopy and cryo-ET/cryo-EM to map and understand structural transitions and stabilization of microtubule ends in close collaboration with the labs of Marileen Dogterom ( TU Delft ) and Anna Akhmanova ( Utrecht University ).

This is an ideal position for candidates with a background in structural biology or biophysics who have affinity for, and ideally a track record in, the development of new methods that help push the frontiers of molecular imaging. We also welcome applications of ( bio ) physicalists with a background in instrument development, imaging physics and / or nanosystems engineering who are eager to explore molecular imaging of biological systems.

We offer a dynamic, supportive and collaborative environment with access to state-of-the-art facilities. The Department of Bionanoscience and Kavli Institute for Nanoscine in Delft provide outstanding infrastructure for nanofabrication ( Kavli NanoLab ), fluorescence microscopy, molecular / cell biology, protein biochemistry, single-molecule biophysics, cryo-EM/ET and high-performance computing. We foster a vibrant and open atmosphere that encourages interdisciplinary research and provides opportunities for personal and professional growth


You have ( or will soon complete ) a PhD in structural biology, biophysics or a related field, and have experience and / or strong interest in methods development. We also welcome applications from candidates with a PhD degree in physics or nanosystems engineering who are motivated to venture into molecular imaging of biological systems.

– You have advanced knowledge and expertise in one or several of the following fields:

  • cryo-EM / cryo-ET and / or fluorescence microcopy
  • structural biology
  • micro / nanofluidics
  • MEMS / NEMS nanofabrication
  • protein biochemistry

– You ideally have experience in ( or are willing to learn ):

  • speciment vitrification
  • MEMS prototyping
  • instrument development
  • time-resolved ( cryo- ) EM
  • optical systems
  • Python programming

Conditions of employment

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customizable compensation package, a discount on health insurance and sports memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work separators can be arranged.

For international applicants, TU Delft has theComing to Delft Service. This service provides information for new international employees to help you prepare the relocation and to settle in the Netherlands. The Coming to Delft Service offers a Dual Career Programfor partners and they organize events to expand your ( social ) network.  

TU Delft ( Delft University of Technology )

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.

At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!

Faculty Applied Sciences

With more than 1,100 employees, including 150 pioneering principal investigators, as well as a population of about 3,600 passionate students, the Faculty of Applied Sciences is an inspiring scientific ecosystem. Focusing on key enabling technologies, such as quantum and nanotechnology, photonics, biotechnology, synthetic biology and materials for energy storage and conversion, our faculty aims to provide solutions to important problems of the 21st century. To that end, we educate innovative students in broad Bachelor’s and specialist Master’s programs with a strong research component. Our scientists conduct ground-breaking fundamental and applied research in the fields of Life and Health Science & Technology, Nanoscience, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Science & Technology, and Engineering Physics.

We are also training the next generation of high school teachers.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Applied Sciences.

Additional information

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Arjen Jakobi ( ) clearly indicating the reference to this vacancy in the subject line.

Application procedure

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 15-08-2023 via the application button and upload your motivation and CV.

  • A pre-employment screening can be part of the selection procedure.
  • Applying for an exemption for specific research and educational areas is an obligatory part of the selection procedure for this vacancy. This exemption must be obtained from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science ( OCW ) before an employment contract is agreed upon. Click here for more information.
  • You can apply online. We will not process applications sent by email and / or post.
  • Please do not contact us for unsolicited services.

For information about the application procedure, please contact Naomi Spek ( ).