COS HeidelbergJob opportunities

Postdocs, researchers, PhD theses

Two PhD positions

“Centriole regulation in health 
and disease”

Centre of Organismal Studies (COS) and

Centre for Molecular Biology (ZMBH)

Heidelberg University, Germany

 We are seeking for two motivated PhD students interested in basic and applied centriole research related to human disease. The centriole is a microtubule-based structure that is important for mitotic spindle formation and assembly of the primary cilium, an essential signalling organelle. Duplication, length and structure of centrioles are highly regulated by a protein network, represented by the protein CEP350, which prevents centriole overduplication, over-elongation or fragmentation. Defects in this network are the cause of inherited disease and are linked to cancer. This project combines the expertise of the Pereira and Schiebel laboratories in cilia formation and centriole biology. It aims to understand the function and regulation of the CEP350 network and how its malfunction leads to disease. The project involves genome editing, the use of protein degrons for the rapid depletion of proteins, phospho-proteome analysis, and advanced microscopy (live cell image, ultra-expansion and electron microscopy).

Applicants should have a strong background in cell or molecular biology and a special interest in centrosome and cilia formation. One student will work in the Pereira lab at COS and the other in the Schiebel lab at the ZMBH. Both PhD students will be members of the Heidelberg Biosciences International Graduate School (HBIGS) (http://www.hbigs.uni-heidelberg.de/). The PhD position is funded in the first instance for 3 years.

 Applications should be sent per email to both, Gislene Pereira (gislene.pereira@cos.uni-heidelberg.de) and Elmar Schiebel (e.schiebel@zmbh.uni-heidelberg.de), and include a letter of motivation, a CV, name of 2-3 referees and a copy of Bachelor and Master transcripts.

 Relevant publications:

1              Theile, L. et al. Centrosome linker diversity and its function in centrosome clustering and mitotic spindle formation. EMBO J 42, e109738 (2023). https://doi.org/10.15252/embj.2021109738

2              Kanamaru, T., Neuner, A., Kurtulmus, B. & Pereira, G. Balancing the length of the distal tip by septins is key for stability and signalling function of primary cilia. EMBO J 41, e108843 (2022). https://doi.org/10.15252/embj.2021108843

3              Karasu, O. R., Neuner, A., Atorino, E. S., Pereira, G. & Schiebel, E. The central scaffold protein CEP350 coordinates centriole length, stability, and maturation. J Cell Biol 221 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.202203081

4              Streubel, J. M. S. & Pereira, G. Control of centrosome distal appendages assembly and disassembly. Cells Dev 174, 203839 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cdev.2023.203839



PhD position (TV-L 13, 65%)

New breeding technologies for improving inulin yield and quality in chicory

Centre of Organismal Studies (COS), Heidelberg University, Germany
We are seeking a motivated PhD student interested in basic and applied research on chicory, an important crop species.
Project - Chicory is an important industrial source for the extraction of inulin (oligofructan). However, inulin degradation occurs at the time of harvest in autumn due to low temperatures, and inulin content and quality are important breeding targets. Since chicory is propagated allogamously due to disruption of a sporophytic self-incompatibility system, it is challenging to breed new varieties. The CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing system is a breeding technique that can precisely alter target sequences in the genome and shorten the time to obtain desirable varieties. This project involves introducing the CRISPR/Cas9 system directly into chicory protoplasts as a ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex to study gene functions (ie fructan degrading enzymes, regulatory proteins) related to inulin degradation and to obtain new varieties.

Why Join the Project?

This is an exciting opportunity to be at the forefront of cutting-edge research in the agricultural industry. You'll work with a dedicated team of professionals, contributing to a project with far-reaching implications for inulin extraction and plant genetics.

Applicants profile

  • Completed (or close to completion) Master degree in biology, biotechnology, agriculture or related fields
  • Previous research experience in molecular biology and genetics
  • Proficiency in molecular cloning and bioinformatics techniques for functional genetics
  • Experience in protoplast isolation and plant tissue culture would be beneficial
  • Strong organizational and communication skills
  • Demonstrated scientific curiosity and problem-solving ability
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively within a team

The PhD student will work at COS in the Greb lab under supervision of Dr. Steffen Greiner and Prof. Dr. Thomas Rausch, and will be member of the Heidelberg Biosciences International Graduate School (HBIGS) https://www.hbigs.uni-heidelberg.de/ 

The PhD position is funded for 3 years with starting date based on mutual agreement but preferably in January 2024. Application deadline: 24.11.2023


Please send application (CV, motivation letter, 2-3 referees and a copy of Bachelor and Master transcripts) preferably as one pdf file to Dr. Steffen Greiner steffen.greiner@cos.uni-heidelberg.de 

Mailing address: Dr. Steffen Greiner, COS Heidelberg, Heidelberg University,
Im Neuenheimer Feld 360, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany. 

We ask for your understanding that application documents received will not be returned. Heidelberg University stands for equal opportunities and diversity. Qualified female candidates are especially invited to apply. Persons with severe disabilities will be given preference if they are equally qualified. Information on job advertisements and the collection of personal data is available at https://www.uni-heidelberg.de/en/job-market

Bachelor and Master theses

Theses can be conducted at COS Heidelberg anytime. Inquiries regarding master and bachelor theses can be addressed directly to the respective group leader, even if nothing particular is advertised here.

Student assistants

 (aka HiWi positions)

We are looking for motivated student assistants for our teaching programs. Please contact the lecturers concerned. It is an advantage to have successfully attended the corresponding course yourself.

Apprenticeship positions

Apprenticeship positions are available at COS for “Fachinformatiker (m/w) Fachrichtung Systemintegration” and "Gärtner (m/w) Fachrichtung Zierpflanzenbau". (For details follow link provided)

Technicians and administrative staff

Nothing advertised at the moment.