The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Stem Cell Medicine (reNEW) at Faculty of Health & Medical Science at the University of Copenhagen is looking for postdoctoral researchers to join the Brickman group starting February 2022 or upon agreement. These positions will each explore one of two proposed projects, both exploiting their recent findings with respect to the nature of enhancer regulation. These projects can be approached both experimentally and computationally, and applications are encouraged from individuals with both wet and/or dry skills in Molecular Biology. The first project focuses on early human embryo development, characterizing gene regulatory networks and developing new in vitro model system for preimplantation development. The second uses enhancer regulation in ventral foregut stem cells (VFGs) to enhance liver and pancreatic differentiation. Both projects will exploit stem cell-based three-dimensional culture models and aim to improve the production of physiological cell types for translational applications.
The Brickman group is interested in the transcriptional basis for cell fate choice, exploring both fundamental mechanisms of transcriptional regulation by signalling and how gene regulatory networks define cell potency and fate in development and differentiation. We recently found that transcriptional exit from pluripotency was achieved independently of transcription factor (TF) binding to enhancers, but that TF was required both to guide differentiation and safeguard plasticity (Hamilton et al., Nature 2019). We have observed a similar form TF mediated enhancer priming during the expansion of human VFGs derived from pluripotent cells (Wong et al. BioXiv 2022). In these projects we seek to exploit these findings to improve in vitro embryo models and differentiation.
We are looking for individuals interested in focusing on enhancer networks in early human development and human organ specific differentiation. As a postdoctoral researcher in the Brickman group, you will be working in the field of stem cell and developmental biology. You will be part of an international interdisciplinary team of scientists focusing on understanding the transcriptional basis for development and exploiting this to develop new technologies for cell type specification in culture. We employ both mouse and human model systems in vitro and in vivo, where the advertised positions will focus on the use of three-dimensional synthetic models for human development.Specifically, the first project will focus on human hypoblast and stem cell-based embryo models and the second, VFGs as a model for the more effective differentiation of pluripotent stem cells to hepatic and pancreatic organoids. The positions will use a combination of cell culture, molecular biology, microscopy and next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies. There are also opportunities to explore both projects computationally.
Responsibilities – projects will involve a combination of some, but not all of the following tasks
- To test the impact new drugs and medias on synthetic embryo/organ development.
- Develop new approaches to in vitro culture.
- To collect NGS data and multiomics on synthetic embryo/organ systems.
- To generate improved human blastoids or enhanced organoid cultures for liver and pancreas.
- To analyze NGS data and develop new pipelines for bioinformatic analysis.
- An equivalent of a PhD degree in Developmental, Stem Cell, Molecular Biology or Bioinformatics.
- Experience with cell culture, where experience with stem cell culture would be an advantage.
- Experience with NGS technologies, such as ChIP-seq, CUT&TAG, CAGE-seq etc. (for postdoctoral researcher positions) and/or bioinformatics skills.
- Skills in routine molecular biology, including cloning, Western blots, RT-qPCR etc.
- English communication skills, both oral and written are a must.
- A stimulating research environment and collaborative work with the Niels Bohr Institute and Hvidovre Hospital.
- Usage of state-of-the-art technologies for stem cell research.
- Possibilities for continued education and training.
Terms of salary, work, and employment
The Postdoc positions are for an initial period of 2 years, but the assumption is that the projects should continue beyond this.
Salary, pension and other conditions of employment are set in accordance with the Agreement between the Ministry of Taxation and AC (Danish Confederation of Professional Associations) or another relevant organisation. Currently, the monthly salary starts at 35,000 DKK/approx. 4,700 EUR (October 2021 level). Depending on qualifications, a supplement may be negotiated. The employer will pay an additional 17.1 % to your pension fund.
Foreign and Danish applicants may be eligible for tax reductions, if they hold a PhD degree and have not lived in Denmark the last 10 years.
The position is covered by the Job Structure for Academic Staff at Universities 2020.
Your online application must be submitted in English by clicking ‘Apply now’ below. Furthermore, your application must include the following documents/attachments – all in PDF format:
For further information contact Professor Joshua Brickman firstname.lastname@example.org
The deadline for applications is 1 December 2022, 23:59pm CET
We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.
The further process
After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the hiring committee. All applicants are then immediately notified whether their application has been passed for assessment by an unbiased assessor. Once the assessment work has been completed each applicant has the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that relates to the applicant him/herself.
You can read about the recruitment process at http://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/
The applicant will be assessed according to the Ministerial Order no. 242 of 13 March 2012 on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Universities.
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Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.
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