Opportunities for a postdoc in quantitative biochemistry to probe the dynamics of eukaryotic DNA replication

Updated: 6 months ago
Deadline: 15 Apr 2023

Opportunities for a postdoc in quantitative biochemistry to probe the dynamics of eukaryotic DNA replication
Opportunities for a postdoc in quantitative biochemistry to probe the dynamics of eukaryotic DNA replication
Published Deadline Location
today 15 Apr Delft

Job description

Job description

We are looking to an ourstanding experimentalist for this exciting NWO-funded project at the interface of biochemistry and biophysics that has as its goals to understand the dynamics of eukaryotic DNA replication.


What are you going to do?

In this fully-funded project, you will:

  • utilize skills in protein purification and sample preparation for ensemble biochemistry and single-molecule biophysics studies;
  • develop an interdisciplinary skillset by using ensemble biochemistry and single-molecule biophysics to study and the prepared proteins to study DNA replication;
  • come with suggestions to expand the interdisciplinary skillset as necessary for the benefit of the project;
  • employ/develop simulations and data analysis routines to analyze acquired data;
  • be embedded in an scientifically outstanding and warmly communicative interdisciplinary team at TU Delft;
  • publish your results together with biochemists and biophysicists on the team;
  • have the opportunity to obtain teaching experience and improve your leadership skills while guiding undergraduate students.


About the project

During our lifetimes, we copy approximately a lightyear’s worth of DNA, and how the different components of the molecular machinery (the replisome) work together to achieve this successfully is an area of highly active research.  Here, you will take on the exciting challenge of understanding the dynamics of DNA replication by purifying, reconstituting, and studying the activity of eukaryotic replisome at the single-molecule level. You will examine replisome composition, replisome motion dynamics, and the interplay between these two quantities; and examine how these change in the context of chromatin or obstacles on the DNA. To do so, you will employ a combination of biochemical approaches (protein purification, biochemical assays, DNA sequencing) and novel biophysical instrumentation (e.g. fluorescence imaging, single-molecule force spectroscopy, microfluidics, cryo-electron microscopy). You will analyze the resulting datasets using biophysical modelling, interact with collaborators in molecular biology and biochemistry in the United Kingdom (involving extensive visits), and in doing so, publish high-quality scientific papers to advance this exciting field. 

  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €2960—€4670 per month
  • Delft View on Google Maps

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


For this innovative, interdisciplinary, and NWO-funded project, we are looking a quantitative biochemist, with:

  • a completed Ph.D. degree in molecular biology, biochemistry, or biophysics;
  • practical experience in the above areas are desired, preferably including protein purification;
  • a strong motivation to develop a combined biochemistry/biophysics skillset; (protein biochemistry and protein biophysics, single-molecule kinetics), and an interest in interdisciplinary research;
  • an independent, well-organized, and reliable work style together with an ability and interest in working in a small team;
  • good interpersonal communication skills and a strong interest in the broader field of biophysics, thereby contributing to our interactive lab culture.

We look for friendly and driven colleagues of all kinds to enrich our team. We would like to welcome our new colleague as soon as possible in 2023.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 1 year.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.

For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation. An International Children's Centre offers childcare and there is an international primary school.

Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context. At TU Delft we embrace diversity and aim to be as inclusive as possible (see our Code of Conduct ). Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale.

Challenge. Change. Impact! 


Faculty of Applied Sciences

With more than 1,000 employees, including 135 pioneering principal investigators, as well as a population of about 3,400 passionate students, the Faculty of Applied Sciences is an inspiring scientific ecosystem. Focusing on key enabling technologies, such as quantum- and nanotechnology, photonics, biotechnology, synthetic biology and materials for energy storage and conversion, our faculty aims to provide solutions to important problems of the 21st century. To that end, we train students in broad Bachelor's and specialist Master's programmes with a strong research component. Our scientists conduct ground-breaking fundamental and applied research in the fields of Life and Health Science & Technology, Nanoscience, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Science & Technology, and Engineering Physics. We are also training the next generation of high school teachers and science communicators.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Applied Sciences.


Department Bionanoscience

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

Who are we?

The Nynke Dekker Lab (http://nynkedekkerlab.tudelft.nl/ ) is a highly successful single-molecule biophysics research lab within the Department of Bionanoscience at the TU Delft. The lab focuses its studies on understanding DNA and RNA replication from a quantitative perspective both in vitro and in vivo. The lab employs state-of-the-art biophysical techniques (e.g. advanced single-molecule fluorescence, optical and magnetic tweezers) together with in-house molecular biology and biochemistry. Studying the dynamics of DNA and RNA replication at the single-molecule level requires broad and integrated expertise; as such, we employ outstanding international scientists trained in biophysics, biochemistry, and cell biology who work together enthusiastically as a multidisciplinary team. You will be part of this group and will interact actively with current members.

Working at TU Delft

Join the oldest and largest technical university in the Netherlands. Work on clever solutions for worldwide challenges, to change the world and make an impact. Ready to bring your energy to our research?

Challenge, change, impact!

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Application procedure

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 15 April 2023 via the application button or by sending an email to n.h.dekker@tudelft.nl .

Applications should include a motivated cover letter of application, a detailed CV, and the names and contact information of three references. Applications will be evaluated on a first-come, first-serve basis.

When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number.


For more information about this position, please contact Prof. Nynke Dekker, phone: +31 (0)15-2783219, e-mail: n.h.dekker@tudelft.nl .

  • A pre-employment screening can be part of the selection procedure.
  • Applying for an exemption for specific research and educational areas is an obligatory part of the selection procedure for this vacancy. This exemption must be obtained from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) before an employment contract is agreed upon. Click here for more information.
  • Acquisition in response to this vacancy is not appreciated.

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