PhD Scholarship in Functional Proteomics to Study the Function, Structure,
Regulation, and Targeting of Nuclear Exosome Adaptor Complexes in RNA Decay
The Centre for Exo-Adapt invites applications from outstanding candidates who
are interested in joining our team as a PhD fellow. The PhD fellow will be
affiliated with the Jens S. Andersen group at the Department of Biochemistry
and Molecular Biology, University of Southern Denmark, Odense. The position is
available for three years from April 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter.
Application deadline: 7 March 2022.
The RNA exosome
Our genome produces RNA that either gives rise to protein or to independent
RNA molecules. However, genomic DNA is hyperactive, and only a fraction of the
RNA produced ends up as functional molecules - the rest is degraded. The
exosome complexes are the molecular machines that detect and remove
undesirable RNA so that cells do not drown in their own molecular waste. The
core complex of the exosome has been comprehensively studied, revealing that
it is merely a general RNA degradation machine. Instead, specific recognition
of its multitude of substrates is achieved by the association of the exosome
with so-called protein adaptor complexes. Although some of these have been
identified, we do not understand how they recognize and discriminate their
substrates, how they interact with the exosome and how these interactions are
regulated to achieve adequate RNA turnover at steady state or in dynamic
The Centre for Exo-Adapt is a collaborative project supported by a grant
from the Novo Nordisk Foundation Challenge Programme. The Exo-Adapt initiative
aims to study the function, structure, regulation, and targeting of nuclear
exosome adaptor complexes with a role in RNA degradation using a combination
of genomics, proteomics, and cryo-electron microscopy approaches.
The project involves the following PIs:
Torben Heick Jensen (coordinator), Department of Molecular Biology and
Genetics, University of Aarhus, Denmark
Elena Conti, Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, Munich, Germany
Jens S. Andersen, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology,
University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark
Research Project and Role
As a PhD fellow in Exo-Adapt you will be engaged in highly ambitious and
interdisciplinary projects covering functional and structural studies of
protein-RNA complexes using for example CRISPR-mediated gene editing,
fluorescence microscopy, protein-protein interaction and PTM analysis by mass
spectrometry-based proteomics, and characterization of RNA substrates by RNA
sequencing and bioinformatic approaches.
You will interact and collaborate closely with other researchers in the Jens
S. Andersen, Torben Heick Jensen, and Elena Conti groups as well as with
members of the other research groups at the Biomedical Mass Spectrometry and
Systems Biology Section at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular
A research position available for three years in a stimulating and
supportive, international research environment.
Access to state-of-the-art equipment, facilities, and infrastructure
within proteomics, including a unique collection of advanced
instrumentation for mass spectrometry (Orbitrap Exploris 480 and Orbitrap
Eclipse from Thermo Fisher Scientific, and timsTOF Pro and flex from
Bruker) and for bioimaging (Abberior facility line STED, Nikon 3D STORM
and Nikon dual cam SIM).
Opportunity to exchange knowledge, discuss project progress, and visit
Exo-Adapt partners for cross-laboratory research projects and
environmental exchange as part of the PhD education.
Opportunity to interact with a wider network of national and international
Opportunity to develop your own ideas within our research frame.
A competitive salary and social benefits (e.g. health coverage, parental
leave, social security etc.).
Dedicated assistance and support with various practical, social, and legal
aspects (housing, visa, administration, tax etc.), especially for
international candidates through our international staff office (ISO)
We are looking for a highly motivated, competent, enthusiastic, and ambitious
A recent academic education with a Master's degree in biochemistry,
biomedicine, molecular biology, protein science, analytical biochemistry,
or similar field
Experience in mass spectrometry-based proteomics or protein science
Proficiency in computational data analysis and statistics
Strong communication and collaborative skills and an interest in working
in an international and interdisciplinary environment
An open and positive mind to contribute positively to the success of the
Centre for Exo-Adapt and well-being of the research team
In addition to research, the applicant must be able to teach and advise
Proficiency in spoken and written English.
Applicants will primarily be evaluated based on their documented international
For further information, please contact Professor Jens S. Andersen
Application, salary etc.
Appointment as a PhD Research Fellow is for three years. Employment stops
automatically at the end of the period. The holder of the scholarship is not
allowed to have other paid employment during the three-year period.
The successful applicant will be employed in accordance with the agreement on
salaried PhD scholars between the Ministry of Finance and AC (the Danish
Confederation of Professional Associations). Please check links for more
information on salary and taxation.
The successful candidate will be enrolled at this university in accordance
with faculty regulations and the Danish Ministerial Order on the PhD Programme
at the Universities (PhD order).
The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus
welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal
Application must be made in the form of a Declaration of Interest including
• A research proposal/description of your approach to the above project (max
one page excluding references)
• A letter stating your specific interest, motivation and qualifications for
the project in question (max. two pages) (please attach this under box
• Detailed CV, including personal contact information
• Copies of diplomas, Bachelor as well as Master's degree, including
transcript of notes/grades
• At least two signed reference letters. Should your referees wish to send
their letters directly to us, please have them use e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
mentioning your name and the title of the position in the subject line. And
please note that these also need to reach us before deadline.
Shortlisting may be used in the assessment process.
Further information about the PhD-study can be found at the homepage of the
Applications must be submitted electronically using the link "Apply online".
Attached files must be in Adobe PDF or Word format. Each box can only contain
a single file of max. 10 Mb. We strongly recommend that you read How to apply
before you apply.
Incomplete applications and applications received after the deadline will
neither be considered nor evaluated. This also applies to reference letters.
Further information for international applicants about entering and working in