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Postdoctoral position (2 years) in Structural Infection Biology

Institutionen för molekylärbiologi




  • Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
  • Extent 100%
  • Place Umeå

The Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå University, seeks a postdoctoral researcher to the Barandun Laboratory to study the fascinating molecular world of microsporidia using molecular and structural biology techniques. The employment is full-time for two years with start in January 2021 or after agreement.

The Barandun Laboratory at MIMS

The Barandun laboratory ( is a young and dynamic research group at Umeå University using cryo-EM to study how intracellular pathogens infect, exploit, and manipulate their host cells. Our research group is affiliated with The Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden (MIMS) and Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab), located at the Department of Molecular Biology. MIMS is the Swedish Node in the Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine. Our laboratory has excellent access to an outstanding cryo-EM facility, the Umeå Core Facility for Electron Microscopy at Umeå University, which is hosting one of the two nodes of the national cryo-EM facility at SciLifeLab. Our work is funded through a Swedish Research Council and an ERC starting grant.

Project description and work tasks

This project involves the establishment of an unbiased structural proteomics pipeline to shed light on evolutionary innovations in microsporidia biology. The goal is to isolate macromolecular machines from endogenous sources via fractionation, or later by targeted affinity purification, for high-resolution structural characterization using cryo-electron microscopy and mass spectrometry analysis. This will be complemented with functional techniques, such as gene expression profiling (RNA sequencing), localization studies (nanobody labeling or epitope tagging, microscopy), or interaction studies (recombinant reconstitution, xl-msms), to unravel the role of unknown or highly compacted microsporidian complexes.

Further details are provided by Jonas Barandun (


The candidate should have been awarded a doctorate or a foreign qualification deemed to be the equivalent of a doctorate qualifies for employment as a postdoctoral fellow. Priority should be given to candidates who have completed their doctoral degree no more than three years before the closing date of the application. A candidate who has completed their degree prior to this may be considered if special circumstances exist.

The Ph.D. should be in Molecular Parasitology or equivalent. Extensive knowledge in molecular biology, genetics, and modern techniques for genome manipulation (e.g. CRISPR/Cas9) is required. The ideal candidate is familiar with the long-term culturing of challenging intracellular pathogens (such as Toxoplasma, Plasmodium, Microsporidia, or similar) and has a proven track record of successful gene knockouts/knockdowns and targeted epitope tagging. Knowledge in protein/RNA biochemistry, large scale protein expression and purification from bacterial sources is expected. Excellent communication skills in spoken and written English and the ability to interact effectively and work productively in a team are necessary.

Experience with bacterial expression and purification of recombinant nanobodies is highly advantageous, and basic knowledge about structural biology (cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography) is desirable qualifications.


You must apply via Umeå University's recruitment system no later than 2020-12-01.

The application (in English) should be submitted as a single pdf file and contain the following elements:

  • 2-page personal cover letter stating your past work, your interest and how your previous qualifications will contribute to the advertised project
  • 2-page curriculum vitae (CV) with publication list (please do not include full-text publications) including contact details for at least two reference persons
  • Copy of doctoral degree certificate

We look forward to receiving your application!


January 2021 or as agreed


Jonas Barandun

Registration number

AN 2.2.1-1564-20


Monthly salary

Union representative


090-786 53 65


090-786 52 96


090-786 54 31




Umeå University wants to offer an equal environment where open dialogue between people with different backgrounds and perspectives lay the foundation for learning, creativity and development. We welcome people with different backgrounds and experiences to apply for the current employment. We kindly decline offers of recruitment and advertising help.