The Human Resources Strategy for Researchers

Postdoc: Protein liquid-liquid phase separation in synthetic cells

    Radboud University
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    Recognised Researcher (R2)
    24/02/2020 00:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Netherlands › Nijmegen

Are you an ambitious postdoc interested in building a synthetic cell? Join our strong team!

Our research focuses on understanding the role of liquid-liquid phase separation in the organisation, control and direction of biomolecular processes in cells. Ultimately, we aim to use these insights to create dynamic membrane-free compartments in synthetic cells to control the availability, folding and reactivity of biomolecules in space and time. The current emphasis is on developing populations of coexisting phase-separated compartments that can sequester RNA or proteins depending on their primary or secondary structure.

As a postdoc you will work on building a synthetic cell equipped with dynamic, membrane-free compartments inspired by membraneless organelles found in living cells. These artificial organelles will help direct enzymatic and genetic reaction networks in vitro, by acting as super-enhancers or reaction hotspots. You will design and test new protein constructs that undergo liquid-liquid phase separation and sequester specific biomolecules, and study their role in enhancing transcription, protein folding and oligomerisation. Ultimately, you will create a genetic toolbox that encodes all components of synthetic organelles in a synthetic cell. Throughout the project, you will work extensively with cell-free synthetic biology, fluorescence microscopy and microscopy-based material analysis, state-of-the-art microfluidic tools, and mathematical modelling techniques.

For more information, see www.spruijtlab.com & Front. Mol. Biosci. 2019, 6, 21; Nature Nanotechnology 2018, 13, 849; Soft Matter 2018, 14, 361; Nature Nanotechnology 2016, 11, 191.


  • Employment: 32 - 40 hours per week.
  • A maximum gross monthly salary of € 4.274 based on a 38-hour working week (salary scale 10).
  • The exact salary depends on the candidate's qualifications and amount of relevant professional experience.
  • In addition to the salary: an 8% holiday allowance and an 8.3% end-of-year bonus.
  • Duration of the contract: 1 year, with a possible extension to 3 years.
  • The intended start date is 1 April 2020.
  • You will be able to make use of our Dual Career Service: our Dual Career Officer will assist with family-related support, such as child care, and help your partner prepare for the local labour market and with finding an occupation.
  • Are you interested in our excellent employment conditions?

Selection process

Please address your application to Evan Spruijt and submit it, using the application button, no later than 23 February 2020, 23:59 Amsterdam Time Zone.

Your application should include the following attachments:

  • Motivation letter.
  • CV.

Additional comments

For more information about this vacancy, please contact:
Evan Spruijt, PI
Email: e.spruijt@science.ru.nl

Web site for additional job details

Offer Requirements

Specific Requirements

  • A PhD degree in chemical biology, biochemistry, biophysics or a related field.
  • You have experience in molecular biology (cloning, transformation of bacteria and culturing) and working with proteins. Experience in fluorescence microscopy and/or quantitative image analysis would be an advantage.
  • You have excellent communication skills and the willingness to work in a dynamic, international research team.
  • You are proficient in written and spoken English.
  • You are creative, have an analytical mindset, and want to work at the forefront of science.
  • You are a team player.

Map Information

Job Work Location Personal Assistance locations
Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Radboud University
6525 XZ
Houtlaan 4

EURAXESS offer ID: 482201
Posting organisation offer ID: 288984


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