PhD position in Quantitative Cell Biology/Biochemistry (1.0 FTE)

Updated: 12 days ago
Deadline: 28 Jul 2022


Founded in 1614, the University of Groningen enjoys an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative centre of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Flexible study programmes and academic career opportunities in a wide variety of disciplines encourage the 36,000 students and researchers alike to develop their own individual talents. As one of the best research universities in Europe, the University of Groningen has joined forces with other top universities and networks worldwide to become a truly global centre of knowledge.

The Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB), one of the larger institutes of the Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE), provides an excellent environment for top-notch research in the field of biomolecular sciences. Thirteen vibrant research units with strong roots in biochemistry, biophysical chemistry, cell biology, computational biology, genetics, microbiology, molecular biology, and systems biology are organized in two focal areas: ‘Molecular Mechanisms of Biological Processes’ and ‘Physiology and Systems Biology’.

Job description

We are looking for a highly motivated and enthusiastic PhD candidate with a strong background in (bio)chemistry, cell biology, (bio)physics or closely related fields to join the Cell Cycle Dynamics group of Dr Julia Kamenz.

In a human body, billions of cells divide every single day. Errors during cell division or uncontrolled cell proliferation can have detrimental consequences including cancer development. Our research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulation of cell proliferation and cell division. These studies include (1) the intricate regulation of the kinases and phosphatases involved in the processes of cell division, (2) the impact of post-translational modifications in regulating cell division – in particular phosphorylations – and (3) studying the complex signaling networks surveying and controlling cell cycle progression. Specifically, this PhD project focusses on how multisite phosphorylation of large mitotic complexes defines the temporal dynamics of their functions during mitosis.

To tackle these questions, we combine a variety of cell biological, biochemical and systems biological approaches including Xenopus laevis egg extracts, enzyme biochemistry, fluorescence live cell imaging of human cells and computational modelling. The PhD candidate will have access to state-of-the-art microscopes, mass spectrometry, tissue culture and animal facilities.

The Cell Cycle Dynamics group is embedded in the Molecular Systems Biology unit at the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute, which provides an inspiring, interdisciplinary and collaborative research environment. The PhD candidate will further receive excellent training through innovative research projects, advanced courses and training opportunities, complemented by workshops on research, transferable skills and teaching. As a PhD candidate, you are committed to conduct independent and original scientific research, to report on this research in international publications and presentations, and to present the results of the research in a PhD dissertation, to be completed within 4 years.


The successful applicant has:

• a Master's degree with specialization in biochemistry, cell biology, biophysics, bioengineering or closely related topics (if not graduated yet, please indicate the expected graduation date)
• research experience in biochemistry, molecular biology and/or cell biology
• a creative, open and resilient mind and good English skills
• excellent interpersonal skills combined with an ability to work efficiently both independently and in a team.

Experience in working with the Xenopus laevis egg extract system, protein purification (including insect cell culture) or protein mass spectrometry is of advantage.

Conditions of employment

We offer you following the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

• a salary of € 2,541 gross per month in the first year, up to a maximum of € 3,247 gross per month in the fourth and final year.
• a full-time position (1.0 FTE)
• a holiday allowance of 8% of gross annual income
• an 8.3% end-of-the-year allowance.

The successful candidates will first be offered a temporary position of one year with the option of renewal for another three years. Prolongation of the contract is contingent on sufficient progress in the first year to indicate that successful completion of the PhD thesis within the next three years is to be expected. A PhD training program is part of the agreement and the successful candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School of Science and Engineering.

The conditions of employment:

The planned starting date is September/October 2022, however, there is some flexibility in the starting date.


For information you can contact:

Dr Julia Kamenz,

(please do not use the email addresses above for applications)

Additional information
Groningen Biomolecular Science and Biotechnology Institute
The city of Groningen
Cell Cycle Dynamics group
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