PhD position - Biophysics and Neuroscience

Job description

A 4-year position is available for a PhD candidate in the research group of Dimphna Meijer, Department of Bionanoscience, Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands.

The long-term goal of our research is to understand synapse assembly and disassembly at the molecular level, during health and disease. Towards this end, we develop biophysical nanoscale models of the neuronal synapse, using cellular components. We address questions such as: What is the underlying structural basis of synapse formation? What happens at the nanoscale levels in diseased brain? We have recently determined cryo-EM structures of synaptic cell adhesion molecules that reveal part of the molecular recognition code underlying synapse formation. We are now aiming to understand molecular recognition and synapse formation in a cellular context using a combination of protein biochemistry, biophysics & structural biology, and mammalian cell biology approaches.

The successful applicant will be the driver of a new project concerning detailed structural characterization of synapse assembly with a bottom-up approach. State-of-the-art equipment, including high-end light and electron microscopes, as well as advanced mammalian cell culture facilities are available in our department.

We are an international, growing team of multidisciplinary scientists. We aim for a high-impact, supportive environment, where talented people work together to solve neurobiological questions. See also our group website www.dimphnameijerlab.org.

Requirements

We are looking for a highly motivated and goal-oriented researcher that is willing to take on new challenges. The candidate has a M.Sc. degree in nanobiology, biochemistry/biophysics, structural biology, or related field. The ideal applicant has experience with single-molecule and structural biology approaches, and is interested in applying cryo-electron microscopy and cryo-electron tomography to neurobiological questions. Cryo-EM/Cryo-ET experience is a plus but not required. The candidate should be fluent in English and motivated to work in an ambitious and collaborative research team.

Working conditions

We offer an appointment as PhD student for a period of 1.5 year, which will be extended with a second term of 2.5 years if the candidate performs well. Remuneration will be according to the PhD scales set by the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO NU), and will range from € 2.541 per month in the first year to € 3.247 per month in the fourth year (gross amounts, in case of fulltime employment). Applicants should have the right to work in the Netherlands for the duration of the contract. Fulltime is considered to be 38 hours per week.

Department

The Department of Bionanoscience focuses on the fundamental understanding of biological processes, from the level of single molecules to the full complexity of living cells. This research provides fascinating insight in the molecular mechanisms that lead to cellular function. Furthermore it enables the in vitro bottom-up construction of cellular machinery and it impacts applications ranging from biomolecular diagnostics to novel antibiotics and targeted nanomedicine. The department features a strongly multidisciplinary and international team of scientists, whose research areas include single-molecule biophysics, synthetic biology, as well as (quantitative) cell biology.

Additional information

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Dr. Dimphna Meijer, Principal Investigator, e-mail: D.H.M.Meijer@tudelft.nl

Application

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 04 February 2023 via the application button and upload the following information in English (pdf format only):

  1. Letter of motivation (generic letters will be disregarded).
  2. Detailed CV.
  3. Three names of potential references.