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PhD Position in Immunology/Biology

Workscope: Research Associate

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T cells are an essential part of our adaptive immune system that protects us from invading pathogens. To ensure appropriate immune responses the activation and differentiation of T cells is tightly controlled. Conversely, monogenic mutations that cause the break-down of these control mechanisms have been described to lead to autoimmune disease.
Our lab has studied the RNA-binding protein Roquin that regulates mRNA expression in T cells. Roquin loss-of-function induces spontaneous activation and differentiation of T cells and causes autoimmunity and autoinflammation.
In this project and through the generous funding by the Else-Fresenius-Kröner Stiftung we will find out how Roquin loss-of-function in effector and regulatory T cells exerts immune regulation in a T cell intrinsic and extrinsic manner.
The Lab:
The announced PhD position will be located at the recently opened Biomedical Center (BMC) of the LMU. The BMC houses a number of internationally competitive groups and top-notch facilities. It is part of the growing research campus Martinsried / Grosshadern, where for instance also the MPIs for Biochemistry & Neuropiology, the Gene Center of the LMU and the Biocenter of the LMU are located.
Through our partner lab at the Helmholtz Zentrum München, we have access to additional facilities and collaboration partners (see website below).
Ideally you should have the following qualifications:
- very good marks in Biology, Biochemistry or related topics
- good practical and theoretical background in Immunology
- good expertise in genetics
- good expertise in molecular biology
- interest in studying the immune responses of mice
- the ability to work self-motivated in an international team
- good skills in English (speaking and writing)
The project is interdisciplinary in nature and involves
- immune phenotyping by multicolor flow cytometry
- cell culture work
- biochemistry
- molecular biology
- immunizations of mice
- adoptive cell transfer experiments
Start date: 01.11. 2016
Duration: 3 years
Payment: TV-L 13 65% (PhD position 65%)
Our previous research publications on this topic:
Cleavage of roquin and regnase-1 by the paracaspase MALT1 releases their cooperatively repressed targets to promote T(H)17 differentiation. Jeltsch et al., Nat Immunol. 2014; 15:1079-89.
Roquin paralogs 1 and 2 redundantly repress the Icos and Ox40 costimulator mRNAs and control follicular helper T cell differentiation. Vogel et al., Immunity. 2013; 38:655-68.
Review articles:
Regulation of T cell signaling and autoimmunity by RNA-binding proteins.
Jeltsch & Heissmeyer. Curr Opin Immunol. 2016; 39:127-35.
Molecular control of Tfh-cell differentiation by Roquin family proteins.
Heissmeyer & Vogel. Immunol Rev. 2013; 253:273-89.

Contact detail

How to apply:
Please send your application (motivation letter, CV, names of two referees, and, if possible transcripts of your studies in one PDF) until 30.09.2016 by email to
Send application to

Prof. Dr. Vigo Heissmeyer
Biomedical Center of the LMU - Institute for Immunology
Grosshaderner Str. 9
82152 Planegg-Martinsried



Job profile

Working hours
Contract duration
Type of job
PhD Project
Work experience
job experience is not required
Germany (Bayern)
Working place
82152 Planegg-Martinsried
Area of expertise
Biology & Life Sciences