PhD positions Chemical Biology/Biochemistry of protein nanopores Netherlander

PhD positions Chemical Biology/Biochemistry of protein nanopores  (3 fte).

The Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute at the University of Groningen provides an excellent environment for top-notch research in the field of biomolecular sciences. Twelve vibrant research groups with strong roots in biophysics, biochemistry & molecular biology, cell biology, chemistry, computational biology, microbiology or genetics are organized in two focal areas: ‘Molecular Mechanisms of Biological Processes’ and ‘Physiology and Systems Biology’.

Three PhD positions are available in the laboratory of Prof. Giovanni Maglia in the department of Chemistry and Biotechnology of the University of Groningen, The Netherlands.

Job description:

Biological nanopores are an exciting new class of biosensors, which main practical application is in single-molecule DNA sequencing and single-molecule analysis. We are looking for talented and motivated students who are willing to engage in a PhD programme in any of the following subjects:

DE NOVO DESIGN OF NANOPORES. In collaboration with the Molecular Dynamics Group at the University of Groningen the candidate will use molecular dynamic simulations in combination with advanced chemical and biochemical techniques to design nanopores with targeted diameter, shape and function

NEXT-GENERATION SENSORS. Proteins can be internalized inside a ClyA nanopore and the binding of ligands measured directly in blood or sweat. Financed by Oxford Nanopore Technologies, this project will: 1) identify of several proteins adaptors, 2) modulate the binding affinity of the protein adaptors and 3) engineer the nanopore for optimal recognition. The aim is to develop next-generation biosensors for home diagnostics and wearable devices.

PROTEIN SEQUENCING. As part of a consortium that includes researchers from Delft and Wageningen, the candidate will develop, engineer and re-design biological nanopores that will allow the sequence identifications of proteins as they are translocated across a nanopore. This will be the first technology that will be able to identify and sequence proteins at the single-molecule level.

SINGLE-MOLECULE ENZYMOLOGY. Small enzymes will be immobilized inside a biological nanopore either genetically, via Disulfide Bridge, by click chemistry or by non-covalent interactions. The conformational changes associated with catalysis will then be observed by the altered ionic flow through the nanopore.


The candidate should hold a master’s degree in Chemistry, Chemical Biology, Biochemistry or Biotechnology or equivalent.

Expertise in molecular biology (recombinant DNA techniques, protein expression and purification), chemical modification of proteins or peptides, MD simulations will be an advantage, but not a limiting factor.

Conditions of employment:

The University of Groningen offers a salary of € 2,191 gross per month in the first year up to a maximum of € 2,801 gross per month in the fourth year. It is a temporary assignment for a period of four years. First, you will get a temporary position of one year with the perspective of prolongation with another three years. Before the end of the first year, there will be an evaluation as to the feasibility of successful completion of the PhD thesis within the next three years.

The preferred starting date is as soon as possible.

How to apply:

You may apply for this position until 28 February / before 1 March 2017 Dutch local time by means of the application form, see:

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


For information you can contact:

Dr. Giovanni Maglia, (please do not use for applications)

Additional information

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