PhD position | Biophysical Chemistry

Young Researchers Heidelberg
Structural and Cell Biology

Job Code: 07/2021

Job Offer from May 07, 2021

At the Max Planck Institute for Medical Research, one of the 86 institutes of the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science physicists, chemists and biologists create knowledge of long-term relevance to life and basic medical sciences.

Dynamics of macromolecular assemblies by nanometer-resolution MINFLUX/MINSTED

The Department of Optical Nanoscopy (Prof. Dr. Stefan W. Hell) invites applications for a Ph.D. position in Biophysical Chemistry.

New concepts have radically overcome the longstanding limits to optical analysis of molecular systems. Spatial resolutions of a few nanometers have been demonstrated, well beyond the Abbe/Rayleigh limits. The recently introduced MINFLUX (Balzarotti et al., Science 2017) and MINSTED (Weber et al., Nature Photonics 2021) concepts have unlocked the door to minimally invasive, low-light-level analysis of the structure and the dynamics of macromolecular assemblies (e.g. Gwosch et al., Nature Methods 2020) in living cells in 4D at the nanoscale. The unprecedented capabilities available in the Department include experiments at 1-nm resolution.

The successful candidate will design complex in vitro samples for direct observation of the structure and dynamics of macromolecular assemblies and motors with highest spatial and temporal resolution.

Candidates should be highly motivated and prepared to work within a truly multidisciplinary team. They should have earned (or expect to complete soon) a Master’s degree in Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Chemistry, Biophysics or a comparable qualification and should possess a strong background in molecular and structural biology (or related subjects) as well as detailed knowledge in the field of (bio)physics. A willingness to master new challenges, in-depth study of a problem by critical thinking, and developments of novel sample preparation and labeling strategies are all central to success. Experience with light microscopy (super-resolution or confocal microscopy) and image analysis is desirable.

The payment is based on the TVöD guidelines (75% of EG 13). The PhD positions are limited to three years with a possibility of extension. Candidates have the opportunity to participate in one of several Ph.D. programs in Heidelberg. Opportunities may also arise from becoming part of a newly established Max Planck School (see and with a competitive admission process.

The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals.

The Max Planck Society strives for gender and diversity equality. We welcome applications from all backgrounds. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society seeks to increase the number of women in those areas where they are underrepresented
and therefore explicitly encourages women to apply. A daycare center for children is located near the institute.

For further information, please contact Prof. Dr. Stefan W. Hell ().

For general questions, please contact Mrs. Höfer-Elfner () or Ms. Sabrina Giacalone () from human resources.

Your Application:
Please submit your application, including a cover letter (explaining background and motivation), your CV and complete transcripts via e-mail as a single PDF file with the above reference preferably until July 31, 2021 (excellent applications will be considered year-round) to .

Max Planck Institute for Medical Research
c/o Human Resources
POB 10 38 20
69028 Heidelberg

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