Postdoc position Epigenetic reprogramming at Wageningen University

Wageningen University
December 15, 2022
Offerd Salary:€ 2.960
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
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Job Ref.:N/A
Job description

Are you a highly motivated molecular biologist with a passion for developing and applying cutting-edge technologies? Are you an expert in epigenetic regulation and curious about how it affects plant traits? Then this Postdoc position may be of interest to you.

As Postdoc of the Epi-Guide-Edit consortium, you will develop epigenetic editing tools and understand the consequences of editing in tomato protoplast cells (WP1) and later (WP2) in whole tomato plants. You will primarily target DNA methylation in genomic areas containing Transposable Elements (TEs) located in or near genes. The effect of targeted hypo- or hyper- methylation of these TEs on chromatin organisation, TE transcription and mobilisation and gene expression will be studied. We aim to design rules on how the expression of genes containing TE insertions can be modified by epigenetic editing. We will apply, among other techniques, ATAQ-seq, RNA-seq, DNA methylation and histone modification profiling and transposon display at single protoplast cell and pool levels. Long-term effects of the editing events and consequences for particular crop traits will be studied in whole tomato plants (WP2).

Epigenetic gene regulation is crucial for cell and tissue performance and epigenetic aberrations are associated with ageing, and disease development. Gene-specific epigenetic modulation using the CRISPR/dCas platform, i.e. epigenetic editing, provides a flexible system for epigenetic reprogramming. With the Epi-Guide-Edit consortium funded by the NWO Key Technology call , we aim to develop and apply the rules and tools for durable epigenetic editing as a key technology across different applications including health, medical and agricultural implementation.

This postdoc position is embedded in the group of Prof. dr. Gerco Angenent at Wageningen University & Research (WUR, NL), in the research group Plant Developmental Systems. We study the transcriptional regulation of plant developmental processes and how transcription factors and chromatin modifications control genes. Our group focusses on various processes such as flowering time regulation, floral organ development, fruit development and embryogenesis. We apply various methods, such as ChIP-seq, RNA-seq, proteomics, microscopy, CRISPR/Cas-technologies and in vitro assays.

You will work closely together with the other partners in the consortium and four plant breeding and biotechnology companies.


  • A PhD in Cell, Molecular Biology, Life Sciences, Genetics.
  • Passion for epigenetics, genome organisation and gene regulation
  • Demonstrated skills in data analysis, bioinformatics and computational analysis .
  • Practical skills in whole-genome -omics approaches, epigenetic mark profiling and CRISPR technology.
  • Affinity with plant-related research, preferably experience with tomato
  • For this position your command of the English language is expected to be at C1 level. Sometimes it is necessary to submit an internationally recognised Certificate of Proficiency in the English Language. More information can be found here.


    Conditions of employment

    Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:

  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
  • In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will of course receive a good salary. Depending on your experience, we offer a competitive gross salary of between € 2.960,- and € 4.670,- for a full-time working week of 38 hours, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale 10). This is a position for 4 years and 0,8 fte. You will receive a one year contract, which will be extended with an additional three years upon satisfactory performance.

    Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

    You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the "Best University" in the Netherlands for the 17th consecutive time.

    Coming from abroad Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees. Applicants from abroad moving to the Netherlands may qualify for a special tax relief, known as the 30% ruling. Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family.

    Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research's International Community page contains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, schooling, and other issues.


    Employer Wageningen University & Research

    Wageningen University & Research The mission of Wageningen University & Research is "To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life". Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment. With its roughly 30 branches, 7,200 employees (6,400 fte) and 13,200 students and over 150.000 participants to WUR's Life Long Learning, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. The unique Wageningen approach lies in its integrated approach to issues and the collaboration between different disciplines.

    Read the 5 reasons why your future colleagues enjoy working at WUR and watch this video to get an idea of our green campus!

    We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.


    Additional information

    For more information about this position, please contact Prof. dr Gerco Angenent ( and Dr. Ruud de Maagd (

    For more information about the procedure, please contact

    Do you want to apply? You can apply directly using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval. This vacancy will be listed up to and including the 5th of December 2022.

    Equal opportunities Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR. For more information please go to our inclusivity page. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.

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