Postdoctoral Fellowship - High-resolution structure and function of kidney antigen/antibody complexes
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Staff Category: Postdoctoral Fellow
Contract Duration: 2 years
Grading: Stipend
Closing Date: 5 April 2020
Reference Number: HH00185
The European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) is one of the highest ranked scientific research organisations in the world. The Headquarters Laboratory is located in Heidelberg (Germany), with additional sites in Grenoble (France), Hamburg (Germany), Hinxton (UK) and Monterotondo (Italy).   The research group of Matthias Wilmanns has a long-standing record in structural biology on research themes that are of medical relevance. Most of our projects require the combined use of different structural biology methods including X-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy, generally followed by functional experiments.  

Your role

Project Outline:   Membranous nephropathy is caused by autoimmune responses to a number of cell surface proteins at the kidney filtration barrier. In this project, we are aiming to determine the full-length structures of two of these antigens, alone and in complex with specifically binding antibodies. We will use the structural data together with a clinical group from the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (T. Huber, N. Tomas) to elucidate the disease-causing molecular mechanism.

The fellowship is supported and integrated into research network “Immune-Mediated Glomerular Diseases – Basic Concepts and Clinical Implications” (  

You have

  • A PhD in a relevant field
  • Proven record of scientific accomplishments
  • Previously demonstrated expertise in high-resolution structural biology and biophysical approaches including sample preparation (molecular biology, protein purification)
  • Scientific ambition
  • International experience
  • Openness and interest for interdisciplinary work in collaboration with medical researchers
  • Excellent communication skills

You might also have

Additional expertise in biochemistry (in vitro and cell-based assays) and cell biology (including imaging) would be advantageous.  

Why join us

EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation with a very collegial and family friendly working environment. The remuneration package comprises from a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme, medical, educational and other social benefits, as well as financial support for relocation and installation, including your family and the availability of an excellent child care facility on campus. EMBL has a large thriving community of bioinformaticians, working in close collaboration with experimental scientists and with strong links to other local scientists and institutions.  

What else you need to know

We are Europe’s flagship research laboratory for the life sciences – an intergovernmental organisation performing scientific research in disciplines including molecular biology, physics, chemistry and computer science. We are an international, innovative and interdisciplinary laboratory with more than 1600 employees from many nations, operating across six sites, in Heidelberg (HQ), Barcelona, Hinxton near Cambridge, Hamburg, Grenoble and Rome.

Our mission is to offer vital services in training scientists, students and visitors at all levels; to develop new instruments and methods in the life sciences and actively engage in technology transfer activities, and to integrate European life science research.

Informal inquiries should be sent to:

Please note that appointments on fixed term contracts can be renewed, depending on circumstances at the time of the review.

Please apply online through: