PhD student or Postdoc (f/m/d)
– Specificity mechanisms in the ubiquitin system –

Ausschreibungsnummer: 34-22

Stellenangebot vom 22. Juni 2022

The Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences is a leading international research institute of exceptional scientific breadth. With more than 40 research groups and some 1,000 employees from over 50 nations, it is the largest institute of the Max Planck Society.

The research group Ubiquitin Signaling Specificity (Dr. Sonja Lorenz) invites applications for a position as

PhD student or Postdoc (f/m/d)
Specificity mechanisms in the ubiquitin system

Our lab aims to understand how the protein modifier ubiquitin achieves specificity in regulating virtually all aspects of eukaryotic homeostasis. A major key lies in the action of ubiquitin ligases, the most diversified class of enzymes in the ubiquitin system with powerful therapeutic potential. However, progress towards rationally manipulating these enzymes has been impeded largely by our insufficient understanding of their conformational dynamics, macromolecular interactions, and functional integration into cellular pathways. We offer fully-funded PhD student or postdoc positions to explore different aspects of specificity in ubiquitination: (i) the macromolecular network of ubiquitin ligases in the cell and associated functions; (ii) the cross-talk of ubiquitination with other posttranslational modifications, such as phosphorylation and redox-dependent modifications; (iii) the structural mechanisms of ligases at the ribosome. Exciting projects with either structural or biochemical or cell biological focus are available and will be tailored to the interests and expertise of the successful candidates.

PhD candidates should hold/soon expect a MSc or equivalent degree in a relevant area of the life sciences and have initial experience in one or more of the following techniques: protein biochemistry, cell biology, chemical biology, or any aspect of structural biology.

Postdoctoral candidates should hold/soon expect a PhD or equivalent degree in a relevant area of the life sciences and have a proven track record in one or more of the following techniques: cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography, isolation/reconstitution of protein complexes, or cell biology (e.g., Crispr/Cas9-mediated gene editing, RNA interference, co-IP or IF). Additional experience or interest in mass spectrometry/proteomics will be beneficial.

Candidates for either position should be curiosity-driven, self-motivated, passionate about science, and eager to work in an international, multi-disciplinary team.

We offer

  • competitive research in an inspiring, world-class environment
  • professional training, networking and career-development opportunities; free language courses
  • on-site health management: free fitness and yoga room, sports groups, beach volleyball league, and courses for a "moving lunch break”
  • a wide range of opportunities to balance work and family life, including an on-campus kindergarten and vacation care
  • spacious on-site cafeteria with diverse meals; espresso bar
  • initiatives for sustainability and a green environment with an on-site biotope

About us

Based at one of Germany’s premier research campuses, our research group has access to leading-edge infrastructure in all areas of cell and structural biology, including cryo-EM. We are an international team, supported by the Max Planck Society, the German Research Foundation, and the EMBO Young Investigator Program. Our working language is English; knowledge of German is not required. The historic city of Göttingen, located in the center of Germany, offers great outdoor and cultural opportunities, a vibrant student scene, and an impressive scientific heritage.

Position details

The positions should be filled as soon as possible; the exact start date is flexible. PhD students will be funded for three years (with a possibility of extension) and have the opportunity to enroll in one of several PhD programs in collaboration with the University of Göttingen. Postdoc positions are initially funded for two years with a possibility of extension. Payment and benefits are based on the TVöD (wage agreement for public service personal) guidelines.

The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and encourages applications from such qualified individuals. The Max Planck Society strives for gender and diversity equality. We welcome applications from all backgrounds.


Please submit your application including a cover letter (explaining background and motivation), CV, academic transcripts, publication list, and the contact addresses of 2 references as a single PDF file to the email address below. Review of applications will begin immediately.

Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences
Research Group „Ubiquitin Signaling Specificity
Dr. Sonja Lorenz
Am Faßberg 11
37077 Göttingen

Twitter: SLorenzLab

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