PhD in Protein and RNA structural changing during the eukaryotic cell cycle


Faculty of Science and Engineering


University of Groningen

Founded in 1614, the University of Groningen enjoys an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative center of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Flexible study programmes and academic career opportunities in a wide variety of disciplines encourage the 36,000 students and researchers alike to develop their own individual talents. As one of the best research universities in Europe, the University of Groningen has joined forces with other top universities and networks worldwide to become a truly global center of knowledge. The Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) is the largest faculty within the University. We offer first-rate education and research in a wide range of science and engineering disciplines. Our community has an open and informal character with students and staff from around the world.

Job description

Applications are invited for a 4-year PhD study, starting as soon as possible, in the research group of Prof. Matthias Heinemann, ( at the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute. We have a position as a postdoc in Protein and RNA structural changing during the eukaryotic cell cycle as well:

The eukaryotic cell cycle is a fascinating research topic. While we know many of the cell biological changes and biochemical control mechanisms, it turns out that there is still so much that we do not understand. For instance, we just recently showed that also metabolism is dynamic during the cell cycle, and a metabolic oscillator might even exert cell cycle control (Papagiannakis et al, 2017, Molecular Cell; Litsios et al, 2019, Nature Cell Biology).

In this project, we will use budding yeast as a model and latest experimental high-throughput methods to map the structural changes of proteins and RNA during the cell cycle. For this, we will make us limited-digestion mass spectrometry (LiP-MS) to determine the cell cycle-dependent changes in protein structures and in vivo structural probing to determine RNA changes. Therefore, we will collaborate with the two labs who have pioneered these techniques. The identified structural changes will provide us clues on how, for instance, our earlier identified metabolic changes might be accomplished in terms of regulation.


The ideal candidate for this project is an experimental biologist with some affinity also for computational analysis of the acquired high-throughput data. For the later, some basic Python (or Matlab) knowledge is beneficial, but not a must. During the project, the candidate will also spend some time in the lab of our collaborators.

Your profile includes:

• a Master degree in (molecular) biology, biochemistry, or systems biology
• excellent command of the English language with strong communication skills
• ability to work efficiently, independently as well as in a team.

Conditions of employment

Contract length: 48 months.

We offer an attractive job with (i) newest experimental techniques to map changes in protein / RNA, (ii) nice interactions in a truly interdisciplinary/international lab, (iii) potential to explore totally new science; (iv) lots of freedom to shape the project.

We offer you, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

• a salary of € 2,443 gross per month in the first year, up to a maximum of € 3,122 gross per month in the fourth and final year.
• a holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income
• an 8.3% end-of-year bonus and participation in a pension scheme for employees
• first, a temporary position of one year with the option of renewal for another three years. Prolongation of the contract is contingent on sufficient progress in the first year to indicate that a successful completion of the PhD thesis within the next three years is to be expected. A PhD training programme is part of the agreement and the successful candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School of Science and Engineering.

The conditions of employment:

Job Application

You may apply until 10 October 11:59pm / before 11 October 2022 Dutch local time (CET) for this position by means of the online application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

Applications for the position should include (as a single PDF file):

• cover letter with background and motivation to apply for this position
• curriculum vitae, including details of Bachelor and Master degrees, labwork experience and a publication list, if applicable
• detailed (max. 2 pages) description of previous research experience
• contact details of 2 academic references who can provide information on your suitability for the position.

The University of Groningen strives to be a university in which students and staff are respected and feel at home, regardless of differences in background, experiences, perspectives, and identities. We believe that working on our core values of inclusion and equality are a joint responsibility and we are constructively working on creating a socially safe environment. Diversity among students and staff members enriches academic debate and contributes to the quality of our teaching and research. We therefore invite applicants from underrepresented groups in particular to apply. For more information, see also our diversity policy webpage:[…]/

Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP), and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers, marketing is not appreciated.

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.

Additional information

For additional information, please contact:

Prof. Matthias Heinemann

In your application, please always include the job opening ID 222179H

Extra informatie kan worden verkregen via een van de volgende links:

University of Groningen Groningen Biomolecular Science and Biotechnology Institute The City of Groningen

Digital application form