Cell Biology and Biochemistry of Membrane Fusion (Doktorandenstelle)

The Institute of Cell Biology of the University of Bonn (Germany) is looking for a graduate student (Doktorandenstelle) to work on a research project, funded by the German Science Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft), and focusing on „Cell Biology and Biochemistry of Phagosome-to-Lysosome-Fusion in Phagocytic Cells“

Background: Phagocytes of the immune system such as macrophages form a first line of defence against intruding microorganisms. Phagocytes ingest microorganisms into phagosomes which will then fuse with the various endocytic compartments of the cell and eventually form phagolysosomes by fusion with lysosomes. Delivery to phagolysosomes leads to killing and degradation of most microorganisms, impressively demonstrating the power of this defence system. We are investigating in a cell-free system how the phagosome membrane composition changes over time and how these changes translate into variable fusion of phagosomes with endosome and lysosome membranes (for further information see Jeschke and Haas, Mol Biol Cell 29:452; Jeschke et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 112: 4636; Becken et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 107: 20726).

The methods likely to be used comprise the cultivation and infection of tissue culture macrophages with inert particles or microorganisms; reconstituted fusion of biochemically isolated phagosomes with isolated endosomes or lysosomes; (confocal) fluorescence microscopy and electron microscopy; protein purification and analysis; reconstitution of proteins into liposomes; lipid extraction and analysis; genetic manipulation of tissue culture cells. There are no animal experiments involved.

Activities and responsibilities

Research into the mechanisms of phagosome-to-endosome fusion

Qualification profile

We are looking for a candidate with an excellent degree that qualifies for participation in a PhD program in Germany (typically, a biological MSc degree). We expect that the applicant has advanced knowledge in the areas of cell biology, biochemistry and molecular biology. Very good skills at the bench, dedication, a profound scientific curiosity and a pleasant personality are central requirements.


We offer the possibility to work with state-of-the-art methods in a basic science project that elucidates a central problem of infection biology and immunity. We offer a friendly and supportive learning atmosphere in a well-established laboratory located in a beautiful city.

Equal opportunity is part of the staffing policy of the University of Bonn. Severely disables persons are preferred at equal qualification.

Starting date: As soon as possible

Time line: 3 years

Payment: 50-65% TV-L 13 on the German public service scale

Send application to

If you are interested, please send an E-mail including (i) a cover letter that briefly describes your interest and suitability for this particular position, (ii) a curriculum vitae, (iii) copies of your certificates with grades, and (iv) a pdf copy of your master thesis, to Prof. Dr. A. Haas, Institute of Cell Biology, exclusively to: cell_biology_bonn@web.de

While applying for the job please refer to jobvector and use the following reference number: 1

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