Postdoctoral Position in Macromolecular Crystallography


The Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI) in Braunschweig (Germany) announces an opening for a postdoctoral researcher in macromolecular crystallography. The position is associated with the department “Structure and Function of Proteins” headed by Prof. Wulf Blankenfeldt. The department focuses on unraveling molecular mechanisms of uncharacterized processes in the metabolism, regulation and virulence of pathogenic microorganisms.



About the institute

More than 800 people work at the HZI, a research institution in the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres funded jointly by the Federal Republic of Germany and the Federal State of Lower Saxony. The centre’s task is to undertake biomedical research in the field of infection biology to expand knowledge of the fundamental mechanisms behind medically relevant infectious diseases with the aim of providing the key for the development of new therapeutics and vaccines.

The Department “Structure and Function of Proteins” offers excellent working conditions, state-of-the-art technical platforms and equipment (including bacterial, insect cell and mammalian protein expression systems; access to a rotating anode X-ray source and several synchrotrons, crystal imaging and liquid handling systems; biophysical characterization of proteins), a lively scientific community and excellent support for the development of personal soft-skills.



All projects in our department aim at the identification and elucidation of the molecular function and mechanism of uncharacterized genes in pathogenic microorganisms. A better understanding of these “white spaces” of the genome map will not only unravel interesting new molecular processes but also provide novel targets for pharmaceutical intervention. To achieve our goal, we employ a gamut of methods including – in addition to structural biology – microbiological, biophysical and metabolomic techniques.

Because our department is also the prime partner for structural biology-related questions at the HZI, the Technical University of Braunschweig and the German Centre for Infection Research ( the successful candidate will have the opportunity (and is expected) to take leading roles within our existing and emerging collaborations.



Candidates should hold a Ph.D. in a life sciences related subject at the time of their employment. They should have a strong background in all aspects of macromolecular crystallography, including techniques of recombinant protein production and biophysical characterization. Experience in handling and manipulating pathogenic bacteria (biosafety level 2) is a plus.


The handicapped

Qualified applicants with a disability will be given preference.


Job details

The position is available immediately for three years with a six month probation period. Salary is according to level E14 of the collective labor agreement for public service (TVöD).


Application details

Candidates are asked to submit a full CV including a publication list, a cover letter outlining their interest in this position, a brief summary of current and past research experience (max. 2 pages) and contact data of at least two referees. All documents and information should be provided in English or German.


Applications should refer to code 05/2014 and be sent by 28.02.2014 to:


Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research

Dept. of Human Resources

Inhoffenstraße 7

38124 Braunschweig




For further information, please contact Prof. Dr. Wulf Blankenfeldt,

phone: +49-531-6181-7000, e-mail:


Helmholtz-Zentrum für Infektionsforschung GmbH | Inhoffenstraße 7 | 38124 Braunschweig |
Das HZI ist seit 2007 zertifiziertes Mitglied im "audit berufundfamilie"

Vorsitzende des Aufsichtsrates: MinDir’in Bärbel Brumme-Bothe, Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung
Stellvertreter: MinDirig Rüdiger Eichel, Niedersächsisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kultur
Geschäftsführung: Prof. Dr. Dirk Heinz; Franziska Broer
Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung (GmbH)
Sitz der Gesellschaft: Braunschweig
Handelsregister: Amtsgericht Braunschweig, HRB 477