Postdoc in DNA structure and gene expression in the human genomein the Møllegaard/Svejstrup laboratories at the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (ICMM)

We seek a talented and highly motivated postdoc interested in investigating the interface between gene expression and functional DNA structural analysis to join the laboratories led by Associate Professor Niels Erik Møllegaard and Professor Jesper Svejstrup.

The successful candidate will be employed as a postdoctoral researcher in the research program, transcription, gene medicine and RNA at the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (ICMM) at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen. The employment period is for 3 years starting 1 March 2023, or soon thereafter.

About the labs and the institute
The Møllegaard Group – University of Copenhagen (ku.dk) focuses on understanding sequence-derived effects on DNA helix conformation, in particular with regards to genome function and potential malfunction in human diseases, as well as its evolutionary impact. We will by employment of new powerful methods for DNA structure probing, high throughput sequencing of the human genome, and state-of-the-art bioinformatics tools gain a deeper understanding of the functional importance of DNA structures across the genome. 

The (Svejstrup Group – University of Copenhagen (ku.dk) focuses on the mechanisms of gene expression and various aspects of transcription-associated genome instability and the cellular response to DNA damage obstructing transcription. Research techniques used in the laboratories include: Cell biology, Biochemistry (including SILAC proteomics and reconstitution of key processes with purified factors in vitro) and modern Genome-wide techniques (ChIP-Seq, RNA-Seq, GRO-Seq, etc), as well as Genomic screening (siRNA and CRISPR screens). We will have access to state-of-the-art facilities for mass spectrometry, flow cytometry, cell engineering, and next-generation sequencing.

Project description
It is well established that 2nd and 3rd order DNA sequence effects, giving rise to e.g. triplex H-DNA and G-quadruplex DNA as well as R-loop structures can have significant impact on genome structure and function, not least in terms of transcriptional regulation. Using a unique technique for probing DNA structure/electrostatic potential at high resolution (Lindemose et al, NAR, 2011, Vol. 39, No. 14 6269–6276) we recently identified a new structural motif in a transcriptional control element, and the project will characterize and study the generality, genome distribution and function of this DNA element in cells. Supplementary analysis of some of these sequence elements will include electrophoretic mobility shift assays and subsequent proteomic analysis in order to identify potential proteins that bind to the DNA elements. In addition, dynamical DNA structural changes in the genome will be studied, using DNA targeting with peptide nucleic acids (PNA).

Postdoctoral fellows joining us are encouraged to help develop their own project. A high degree of independence will be granted and expected.

The project represents a close collaboration between two labs sharing the same lab space, and the postdoc will be co-mentored by Niels Erik Møllegaard (nielsem@sund.ku.dk) and Jesper Svejstrup (jsvejstrup@sund.ku.dk).

Your profile

Essential experience and skills:

  • You have a PhD in Biochemistry, Molecular (Cell) Biology, or similar.
  • You possess research experience and an excellent publication record (first authorship expected), with extensive prior experience in Genome/DNA/transcription research, and expertise in either molecular cell biology research, genome-wide analysis, or both, in mammalian cells.
  • Proficient communication skills and ability to work in teams.
  • Excellent English skills written and spoken.

Place of employment 
The place of employment is at the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (ICMM), University of Copenhagen. ICMM offers a creative and ambitious scientific environment, with many different nationalities represented. ICMM aims to produce research with high international impact focusing on the functional cell, its genetic components, and molecular cellular mechanisms in a medical context. 

ICMM currently comprises five research programs, three high profile Research Centers as well as a number of international research groups. The scientists at ICMM are involved in high quality research based undergraduate and graduate teaching programs at the University of Copenhagen.

More information can be found at
https://icmm.ku.dk/english/

Terms of employment
The employment as postdoctoral researcher is a full time (37 working hours per week in average) and a fixed-term position for 3 years. Starting date is 1 March 2023 or after agreement. 

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 DKK 35,728 / approx. EUR 4,795 (October 2022-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.

Questions
For further information please contact Niels Erik Møllegaard by e-mail: nielsem@sund.ku.dk.

Foreign applicants may find this link useful: www.ism.ku.dk (International Staff Mobility).

Application procedure
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:

  1. Motivated letter of application (max. one page).
  2. CV incl. education, work/research experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position.
  3. A certified/signed copy of a) PhD certificate and b) Master of Science certificate. If the PhD is not completed, a written statement from the supervisor will do.
  4. List of publications.

Application deadline: Sunday 4 December 2022, 23.59 p.m. 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 https://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.

The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences comprises approximately 7,823 students, 1,886 PhD students and 5,100 employees. The Faculty advances the field of health sciences through its core activities: research, teaching, knowledge sharing and communication. With basic research fields ranging from molecular studies to studies of society, the Faculty contributes to a healthy future through its graduates, research findings and inventions benefitting patients and the community. The University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding community and invites all regardless of personal background to apply for the position

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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.

Contact

Niels Erik Møllegaard

Info

Application deadline: 04-12-2022
Employment start: 01-03-2023
Working hours: Full time
Department/Location: Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
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