Postdoctor in evolutionary biology

Updated: 8 days ago
Deadline: 30 Apr 2021

Skilled and committed employees are a crucial factor in the success of Linköping University. And we need more of them. Our core expertise comes from teachers and researchers, but a successful university requires experienced and motivated employees in many fields. Everyone is important. We need to recruit many new employees thanks to, among all, an expansion in our research activity. We need you here. We look forward to receiving your application!

The Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology conducts research and offers education at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Research, the predominant activity, is often done in collaboration with corporate and international partners. We are one of the university’s largest, oldest and most well known departments, encompassing five interacting scientific fields: biology, chemistry, material physics, applied physics and theory and modelling.

Hereby advertises a position as

Postdoctor in evolutionary biology
formally based at the Department of Biology, IFM

For this position we are looking for a candidate with a strong background in evolutionary genetics, quantitative genetics and/or bioinformatics. The successful candidate will be part of an interdisciplinary team of researchers investigating the genomic basis of feralisation.

The project, which is funded by the European research council (ERC) explores the molecular mechanisms underlying evolutionary transitions from domestication to re-wilding (feralisation) using a series of feral chickens derived from Hawaii and Bermuda. Using a powerful combination of genomics, transcriptomics, field assays and laboratory experimental evolution the project aims to reveal the genes and causal polymorphisms responsible for re-adaptation to a wild environment, and how this progresses. The project will involve a large amount of sequence data analysis, coming from single cell sequencing data (including both sc RNAseq and sc ATACseq data), as well as conventional whole genome re-sequencing and RNA-seq data.

The candidate will work on various projects, but one of the main ones will involve a combination of expression and ATAC seq QTL analysis using the data generated by single cell sequence data. In addition, selective sweep mapping and other forms of population genetic analysis will be performed. The candidate should therefore be proficient in some or all of these techniques or have specialisation in at least one.

The project will perform Genome Wide Association Mapping using a series of different populations of feralised chickens (domestic birds that have escaped and are now living wild throughout the Hawaiian Island chain), in combination with a wild x domestic chicken intercross to map the genes and polymorphisms underlying their rapid responses to newly imposed selective forces. In this instance the combination of integrating both single cell expression QTL and single cell ATAC-seq QTL will enable the identification of the genetic basis of transcriptomic regulation occurring between wild and domestic chickens down to the specific cell type, whilst the simultaneous mapping of epigenomic and transcriptomic data from the same nucleus should also enable the identification of both the causal elements and causal genes for the regulatory machine in the chicken hypothalamus. Similarly, sweep mapping and other population genetic parameters will be assayed in these feral populations to identify which regions are most important in the response to selection in these populations.

Representative papers for the intercross and the feral birds can be found in the following articles: Höglund et al. 2020 Nature Ecology and Evolution (, Johnsson et al. 2016 Genetics 202, 327-340, Johnsson et al. Nature Communications 7, 1-11.

This is an exciting opportunity to combine a wide variety of genomic and transcriptomic tools along with the opportunity for fieldwork and labwork as part of a vibrant and friendly team.

A Postdoc will essentially carry out research. The position may also involve teaching, but during no more than a fifth of work time.

The position requires a doctorate or an equivalent degree from a foreign university. The doctorate shall have been obtained no longer than three years before the expiration date of the application.

Experience in single cell sequencing, quantitative genetics, QTL mapping and bioinformatics is of benefit.

International applicants must attach a statement on oral and written English skill; IELTS (Academic) 6.5 overall (no subscore below 5.5) or TOEFL (iBT) 90 (written, minimum 20). 

Appointment time
Two years.

Starting date
Beginning of August 2021 or by agreement.

The University applies individual salary scales adapted to the experience of the employee and to the labour market.

Union representatives
Information about union representatives, see Help for applicants .

Application procedure
Apply for the position by clicking the “Apply” button below. Your application must be received at latest 30 April 2021.

Applications and documents received after the date above will not be considered.

Linköping University will continue to develop as an attractive and creative place of work, characterized by equal terms and actively works for equality and diversity.

We look forward to receiving your application!

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