PhD positions in Molecular Immunology (2 x 1.0 FTE)

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 15 May 2024

PhD positions in Molecular Immunology (2 x 1.0 FTE) (V24.0200)
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Job description

Von Willebrand Factor (VWF) plays a pivotal role in blood coagulation, with its secretion from Weibel-Palade bodies (WPBs) being essential for responding to vascular trauma. Dysfunctional WPB biogenesis and exocytosis are characteristic of bleeding disorders such as Von Willebrand disease. In this project, we aim to identify the organelle trafficking routes responsible for WPB formation and secretion.

This project is a collaboration between the research groups of Dr Ruben Bierings (Department of Hematology, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam) and Dr Geert van den Bogaart (Department of Molecular Immunology, University of Groningen (UG)).

Two PhD positions are available, one at each institute.

The UG candidate will utilize newly developed microscopy methods, including Förster resonance energy transfer-fluorescence lifetime imaging (FRET-FLIM), to map SNARE protein trafficking to WPBs. Techniques include FRET-FLIM microscopy, mammalian cell culturing, CRISPR, and molecular cloning.
The Erasmus MC candidate will conduct biochemical assays of WPB cargo secretion and optical assays of WPB exocytosis to determine changes in secretory competence and fusion mode due to altered SNARE sorting. Techniques include high content microscopy, proteomics, total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy, shRNA library screenings, and electron microscopy.

The PhD candidates are expected to also spend research time at the other institute.

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.

This is a collaborative project between the Department of Molecular Immunology at the Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE;, and the Department of Hematology at the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam ( ).


The successful applicant has:

  • a Master degree in one of the following expertise: molecular biology, biochemistry.
  • a good command of English (oral and written)
  • enthusiastic and a team player.
  • willing to spend research time in Rotterdam / Groningen
  • experience with mammalian cell biology and advanced microscopy approaches is an advantage.

Conditions of employment

We offer stimulating scientific environment, access of state-of-the-art devices and techniques, and a beautiful and modern working environment. Employment possibilities will also become available at spinout company from the laboratory.

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

  • a salary of € 2,770 gross per month in the first year, up to a maximum of € 3,539 gross per month in the fourth and final year
  • a full-time position (1.0 FTE)
  • a holiday allowance of 8% of gross annual income
  • an 8.3% end-of-the-year allowance
  • minimum of 29 holidays and additional 12 holidays in case of full-time employment.

The successful candidate will first be offered 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 successful completion of the PhD thesis within the next three years is to be expected. A PhD training program is part of the agreement and the successful candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School of Science and Engineering.

The preferred starting date is as soon as possible.


You may apply for this position by means of the online application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website). Please send us a complete application with the below-mentioned supporting documents as a single PDF:

  • cover letter with background and motivation
  • curriculum vitae, including master's degree, work and research experience, and a publication list
  • two academic referees with contact details.

You may apply for this position until 14 May 11:59 PM Dutch local time (CEST) / before 15 May 2024 by means of the application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

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:

We provide career services for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


For information you can contact:

Please do not use the e-mail address(es) above for applications.


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