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Postdoc position available at MPI BPC: Comparative genomics in planarians

Posted by , on 30 June 2020

Closing Date: 15 March 2021

The department of Tissue Dynamics and Regeneration (Dr. Jochen Rink) invites applications for a position as

Postdoc (f/m/d)
– Comparative genomics in planarians –
(Code number 11-20)

Planarians are fascinating animals that can regenerate from tiny pieces, harbor adult pluripotent stem cells, scale their bodies over a wide size range and, as a taxonomic group, display a fascinating spectrum of regenerative abilities, body sizes, reproductive strategies or life expectancies from a few months to seeming immortality. In collaboration with Gene Myers, our group has pioneered planarian high-quality genome assemblies and we have established a large and phenotypically diverse species collection through world-wide field expeditions.  Comparative genome mining now promises access to a wealth of intriguing research questions. Current project opportunities include probing of the genomic consequences of asexuality by means of comparisons between the sexually and asexually reproducing strains of S. mediterranea; body size evolution in the giant planarians of Lake Baikal or genomic adaptations to life in the lake’s abyssal zone (~ 1600 m depth); intra-organismal population genomics amongst the many independently replicating pluripotent stem cells or the dynamics and functional relevance of the new class of giant planarian retroelements that we discovered. We have a number of fully funded postdoc positions available for talented individuals to pursue these or other questions.

Your Profile

  • You have a PhD or equivalent degree in a relevant subject area, e.g., biology, computational biology or computer science and extensive hands-on experience with genomic data.
  • You have a proven track record in one or more of the following: genome assembly, multi-genome alignments; comparative genomics; structural genome variance; transposon mobility; cancer or evolutionary genomics; phylogenetics and or population genomics.
  • You are passionate about the scientific endeavor and you are not afraid of pursuing your questions beyond the current scientific frontier.
  • You are self-motivated and independent and enjoy being part of an international and interdisciplinary work environment.

About us

We are a brand-new department at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in the historic science town of Goettingen. We represent the organismal end of biophysical chemistry at the institute and investigate the mechanistic and evolutionary underpinnings of planarian regeneration. The department hosts a large zoo of planarian species for comparative analyses and we just established a field station at Lake Baikal in Russia, the Galapagos of planarian biodiversity. We are a thoroughly international and interdisciplinary group of people and based at one of Germany’s premier research campuses. We enjoy generous funding by the Max Planck Society and the proximity to picturesque Goettingen with its bustling student bars.

The Position

The payment and benefits are based on the TVöD guidelines. The Postdoc position are limited to two years with a possibility of extension.

The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals.

Interested? Submit your application including cover letter (explaining background and motivation), CV, transcripts, and publication record preferably via e-mail as one single PDF file to

Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry
Department „Tissue Dynamics and Regeneration“
Dr. Jochen Rink
Am Fassberg 11
37077 Göttingen

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