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Publish date: 93 / 12 / 18 | Rating: Article Rating

Postdoctoral Researcher in Single Cell Genomics : Leuven, Belgium

VIB is a non-profit research institute in life sciences. About 1,400 scientists conduct strategic basic research on the molecular mechanisms that are responsible for the functioning of the human body, plants, and microorganisms. Through a close partnership with four Flemish universities − UGent, KU Leuven, University of Antwerp, and Vrije Universiteit Brussel − and a solid funding program, VIB unites the forces of 74 research groups in a single institute. The goal of the research is to extend the boundaries of our knowledge of life. Through its technology transfer activities, VIB translates research results into products for the benefit of consumers and patients and contributes to new economic activity. VIB develops and disseminates a wide range of scientifically substantiated information about all aspects of biotechnology. More information:


The VIB Center for the Biology of Disease (VIB-CBD) at KU Leuven is currently seeking a highly talented postdoctoral fellow with strong molecular biology and analytical skills to join in top-level single-cell genomics research.

Single-cell analyses are revolutionising our understanding of the scale and function of genomic, epigenomic and transcriptomic diversity that occurs during the lifetime of an organism in health and diseased states. The ability to accurately chart the DNA-sequence from single cells will fundamentally advance our current knowledge of somatic genetic variation, DNA-mutation rates and mechanisms, genetic mosaicism in disease/phenotype aetiology, and will enable to reconstruct detailed cell lineage trees capturing the developmental history and relationships of cells in organs in health and diseased states. Similarly, gene expression in tissues has been mainly analysed by sequencing the RNA extracted from bulk cell populations. In such analyses genes may be perceived to be co-expressed at the population level but in fact may be mutually exclusively expressed when observed at the single-cell level.


You will develop, implement and apply state-of-the-art technology for single-cell (epi)genome and transcriptome analyses to solve challenging biological questions in relation to functional genetic heterogeneity in tumour development and progression, as well as in normal and diseased states of the brain.

You will be embedded in the lab of Prof. Thierry Voet at the University of Leuven (Belgium) and have the opportunity to interact with and regularly visit his research group at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute ( ; Hinxton-Cambridge, UK). You will closely collaborate withVIB-CBD research groups, including the group of Prof. Jean-Christophe Marine focussing on intra-tumour genetic heterogeneity in melanoma; Prof. Matthew Holt for dissecting (functional) genetic heterogeneity in astrocytes; and Prof. Bart De Strooper in relation to probing for pathogenic somatic genetic variation and neuronal diversity in the context of Alzheimer’s disease.


​Essential Skills:

  • A PhD in Genomics, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, or similar, and a passion for problem solving
  • Proven molecular biology and high-end laboratory skills are an essential requirement, in particular in relation to: (minute quantity) DNA- and RNA-extraction methods, (deoxy)ribonucleic acids amplification protocols, DNA-/RNA-seq protocols, protein analysis methods, fluorescent activated cell sorting (FACS).
  • A particular advantage, but not essential, is previous experience with micro-/nano-fluidics devices, droplet technology, previous experience in single-cell analyses ranging from their isolation to profiling of their (deoxy)ribonucleic acids with next-generation sequencing
  • Persons demonstrating additional experience in analysing large datasets using a statistical package (e.g. R) and with programming experience (e.g. Perl) have a particular advantage. I.e. a good mix of wet-lab and bioinformatics/computational skills.
  • Experience in supervising and training other laboratory personnel in specialized techniques is essential.
  • Excellent written and spoken English are essential.
  • Independent and punctilious working style, and an aptitude for technical problem detection and solving.

We offer

  • A stimulating, diverse international research environment in a world-class academic department.
  • The position is for 2 years and subject to renewal. We offer a competitive salary and benefits.
  • Starting date: as soon as possible – the position can be filled immediately….

Don't forget to mention Naturejobs when applying.

Job details

Employer:VIB Center for the Biology of Disease, K.U.Leuven


Location:Leuven, Belgium

Expires:May 04, 2015

Job type:Postdoctoral


Qualifications:Postgraduate - Doctorate/PhD

Employment type:Contract

Job hours:Full-time

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