Post-doc researcher to develop an LC-HRMS platform for metabolomics in human matrices

Updated: 6 months ago
Deadline: The position may have been removed or expired!

Department: Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Regime Full-time

Let’s shape the future– University of Antwerp

The Faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences of the University of Antwerp is looking for a full-time post-doc researcher to develop an LC-HRMS platform for metabolomics in human matrices. The project will be executed at the Toxicological Centre  of the University of Antwerp (TC, UA) , which has extensive analytical expertise and instrumental capabilities related to human exposure assessment and environmental and analytical toxicology. The TC has also developed in-house untargeted metabolomics and lipidomics analytical platforms based on liquid chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight tandem mass spectrometry (LC-QTOF-MS) for the analysis of different biological matrices, such as cell extracts and animal tissues. However, there is an urgent need to evaluate and refine these platforms for the analysis of human biological fluids, such as blood and urine.


  • To develop and optimize sample preparation procedures for blood and urine to ensure a wide coverage of the metabolome in these complex matrices.
  • To tailor the current untargeted metabolomics and lipidomics platforms based on LC-QTOF-MS for the specific needs and characteristics of these matrices.
  • To investigate the usefulness of including additional separation dimensions, such as 2D-LC or ion mobility in the acquisition of data of higher quality.
  • To refine the current data processing and metabolite annotation workflows using vendor and open access software tools for the specific needs of the human metabolome and lipidome.
  • To propose a set of QA/QC measures and criteria for the data acquisition and data analysis workflows to ensure the production of high-quality data.

The outcome of this project would be to establish the first untargeted metabolomics/lipidomics platform at UAntwerpen for human biological fluids.

Profile and requirements:

  • You hold a PhD in analytical chemistry, biochemistry, biomedical or environmental sciences, pharmaceutical sciences, or a related area, obtained after 1 January 2020.
  • You have experience and solid knowledge with the handling and use of LC coupled to HRMS and the preparation of biological samples (biofluids, tissues, and/or cells) for MS-based metabolomics.
  • You have experience in bioinformatics to process HRMS data for statistical analyses and biomarker discovery.
  • You possess excellent English communication skills, both written and oral.
  • You are available to work full time, with high motivation, good planning, communication, and organizational skills.
  • You are able to work effectively both independently and in team, as part of a multidisciplinary, international, and multicultural team; you can manage conflicting demands and meet deadlines.
  • You commit, upon acceptance of the mandate, to apply for a postdoctoral fellowship at a subsequent FWO post-doc  call (Dec 2023) and/or Marie Sk?odowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) post-doc  call (Sept 2023), with the University of Antwerp as host institution.

What we offer

  • Scientific development opportunities in an international cooperative, interdisciplinary research environment and an excellent working atmosphere in a very dynamic, international and professional team
  • Extensive state-of-the-art equipment and infrastructure
  • The opportunity to present your data on international conferences and participate in workshops
  • A competitive salary
  • The planned start date is 1 June 2023 or as soon as possible after that date.

Want to apply:

  • You can apply for this vacancy through the University of Antwerp’s online job application platform up to and including 30 March 2023 (by midnight Brussels time). Click on the 'Apply' button, complete the online application form and be sure to include the following attachments: a 1-page motivation letter and your CV.
  • The selection committee will review all applications as soon as possible after the application deadline. Selected candidates will be invited for an interview in April-May 2023 and will be asked to prepare a short (1-page) project proposal to be discussed during the interview.
  • If you have any questions about the online application form, please check the frequently asked questions  or send an email to . If you have any questions about the project, please contact: Prof. Dr. Adrian Covaci ( ) or Prof. Alexander van Nuijs ( ).

The University of Antwerp received the European Commission’s HR Excellence in Research Award  for its HR policy. We are a sustainable, family-friendly organization which invests in its employees’ growth. We encourage diversity  and attach great importance to an inclusive working environment and equal opportunities, regardless of gender identity, disability, race, ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation, or age. We encourage people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse characteristics to apply.

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