211-0436/20-2H PhD fellow in Single Molecule Biophysics

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 04 Jun 2020

PhD fellow in Single Molecule Biophysics
Department of Chemistry
Faculty of Science

University of Copenhagen

Department of Chemistry Faculty of Science at University of Copenhagen is offering a PhD scholarship in Single Molecule Biophysics commencing 1 September 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Description of the scientific environment
Our lab is developing disruptive technologies to study the biophysical properties of membranes and membrane proteins on the nanoscale using fluorescence microscopy. Membrane proteins are one of the most important classes of proteins in biology comprising more than 60% of existing pharmaceutical targets. Biological membranes enable the function of membrane proteins and therefore play a key role themselves in governing a plethora of biological processes. Our work uncovers hitherto unknown nanoscale properties of membrane and membrane proteins that ultimately dictate cell behaviour, and consequently provides a path towards new generations of therapeutic agents based on entirely new biological principles.

The exciting problems we are investigating are situated at the interface of biology, physics and nanotechnology, and to address them experimentally we have assembled a dynamic, interdisciplinary, group of top-tier biophysicists, biochemists, molecular biologists, and nanotechnologists. Our grants and student projects are frequently in collaboration with world-leading industrial partners including Aquaporin, Chr. Hansen, Novozymes and Novo Nordisk.

For more information see:


Project description
Eukaryotic life is defined by the existence of intracellular membrane-bound organelles. Endomembranes are overall more curved than the plasma membrane their heterogeneous geometrical shapes however are not arbitrary, on the contrary they are so characteristic that they have become a hallmark of the different eukaryotic organelles. To elucidate why this phenotype is so remarkably conserved we have pioneered several high-throughput nanoscopic methods to study how membrane curvature is affecting the function(s) of membranes and membrane proteins, with an emphasis on Ras and G protein coupled receptors. Our contributions have overall helped establish the notion that the properties of biological membranes are defined equally by their lipid composition and their geometrical shape.

 In the PhD project we aim to study GPCRs on the single-molecule level as a means to elucidate the nature of direct interactions of receptors with downstream effectors such as G proteins and arrestins and the way they are spatio-temporally regulated .

Principal supervisor isProfessorDimitrios Stamou, Department of Chemistry, E-mail: stamou@chem.ku.dk .

Job description
The position is available for a 3-year period and your key tasks as a PhD student at SCIENCE are:

  • To manage and carry through your research project
  • Attend PhD courses
  • Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
  • Teach and disseminate your research
  • To stay at an external research institution for a few months, preferably abroad
  • Work for the department

Formal requirements
Applicants should hold an MSc degree in Biophysics with good results and good English skills. As criteria for the assessment of your qualifications emphasis will also be laid on previous publications (if any) and experience with cell and molecular biology techniques, especially cell culture, as well as experience with single-molecule and super-resolution imaging microscopy. Furthermore, the applicant should be familiar to quantitative analysis and programming languages, such as MATLAB.

Terms of employment
The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 331,125 (approx. €43,750) including annual supplement (+ pension at a minimum DKK 53,811). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

The position is also available for candidates who are (or are eligible to be) enrolled at one of the faculty’s master programmes in [her skrives navnet på kandidatuddannelsen]. The duration of the integrated programme depends on the amount of credits that you have passed on your MSc programme. For further information about the study programme please see: www.science.ku.dk/phd , “Study Structures”.

Scholarship and terms of employment for integrated MSc and PhD

PhD grant portions (Ph.D.SU klip)
In the period up to the completion of the MSc programme (up to three years), the student is entitled to so-called PhD grant portions. The grant portions are financed by the grant donor but not by the Danish State Educational Grant and Loan Scheme Agency (as is the case for the ordinary study grant portions on the BSc and MSc programmes). They are called PhD grant portions because this kind of remuneration is regulated and described in the Executive Order on the State Educational Grant and Loan Scheme in Denmark (SU‐bekendtgørelsen), and because the value of a PhD grant portion corresponds to the value of an ordinary Danish study grant portion. Students are awarded 48 PhD grant portions during the period of their MSc and PhD studies.

48 PhD grant portions at DKK 6,243 each, corresponding to DKK 299,664 (approx. €39,955).

'Duty work'
As a supplement to the PhD grant portions, the student may, in accordance with the collective agreement of the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC), be offered 'duty work'. In the period up to the completion of the MSc programme, students performing 'duty work' are paid by the hour. UCPH has decided to offer students on integrated MSc and PhD schemes 150 hours of 'duty work' per year during Part A of the programme (until two years of the combined programme of study remain). 'Duty work' during Part A if it has a duration of three years: 450 hours at a rate of DKK 219.79 (+ 12.5% holiday pay), corresponding to DKK 111,267 (approx. €14,835)

For further information about Part A please see: https://www.science.ku.dk/phd/studystructure/integratedphd/

Salary in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC)
In the period after the completion of the MSc programme, the student is employed as a PhD scholar and is remunerated in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The scheme is arranged in such a way that students graduate from the MSc programme at a time when there are two years left of the integrated programme. For this reason, the salary must be paid for a period of two years in accordance with the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The amounts specified include a supplement locally agreed upon as well as pension contributions: Salary as a PhD scholar: 24 months at a rate of DKK 32,078 (including pension contributions and supplement), corresponding to DKK 769,873 (approx. €102,650).

Application Procedure
The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Cover Letter
  • CV
  • Diploma and transcripts of records (BSc and MSc)
  • Acceptance Letter for the relevant MSc Programme at SCIENCE, if any
  • Other information for consideration, e.g. list of publications (if any),
  • 1-3 reference letters (if any)

Reference letters must be uploaded by the applicant him/herself. The recruiting person must NOT  obtain reference letters which content is not known to the applicant him/herself. This is against Danish law.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The deadline for applications is 4 June 2020, 23:59 GMT +2.

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee. Afterwards an assessment committee will be appointed to evaluate the selected applications. The applicants will be notified of the composition of the committee and the final selection of a successful candidate will be made by the Head of Department, based on the recommendations of the assessment committee and the interview committee.

The main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant and the above mentioned skills. The successful candidate will then be requested to formally apply for enrolment as a PhD student at the PhD school of Science. You can read more about the recruitment process athttp://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/ .

For specific information about the PhD scholarship, please contact the principal supervisor [ProfessorDimitrios Stamou, Department of Chemistry, E-mail: stamo@nano.ku.dk, Direct Phone: +45 35 32 04 79].

General information about PhD programmes at SCIENCE is available at http://www.science.ku.dk/phd .

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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