Job details

Recruitment result
Place of work

Institute of Physical Chemistry Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland TEAM 10: Soft Condensed Matter Group

Funding institution

National Science Centre

Project description

Project title, type and project number

Nanoplastics in living cells, OPUS no. 2021/41/B/ST4/00464, 2/2022

Project leader

Prof. Robert Hołyst


Plastic nanoparticles (PNP) (nanoplastics) pollute water and air and accumulate in cells. Accumulation leads to crowding of the cytoplasm, which influences transport of biomolecules. Impaired transport negatively affects all cellular processes. We do not know how significant this impairment is and how it depends on the concentrations of PNP. The project aims at solving this problem. Proposed physical methods (FCS, RICS, microfluidics, precise analysis of fluorescence) that meet this challenge supplement those currently used by biologists. We will supplement study of transport with uptake and removal kinetics of plastic nanoparticles, their partition coefficient between cells and medium (and/or maximum capacity load), and standard viability tests. If uptake of plastic nanoparticles is irreversible then partition coefficient should be replaced by the maximum load (capacity) of cells for accommodation of NP. Our results obtained for a wide range of PNP concentrations (1 pM up to 1 µM), sizes (10 nm – 200 nm), and time scales (~ ms to hours) will provide vitally needed information to World Health Organization (WHO). (information based on the press release (22 August 2019) and WHO report 2019 ).

This project is timely, as also explained by the Editorial Material, "Nanoplastic should be better understood" published in Nature Nanotechnology (April 2019). Although the project is in the

physical chemistry domain, some standard biological tests must be added to obtain a complete picture of changes induced by crowding cells with nanoplastics. We will correlate standard biological tests with impaired transport in cells. Such a correlation will introduce a new dimension in the scientific approach to cell viability since impaired transport affects all biochemical processes in cells.

Job description

Number of vacancies


Key responsibilities include


1. Sample preparation

2. Measurements

3. Data analysis

4. Reporting

5. Preparing publications


Position in the project

Postdoctoral Researcher position

Job type

Full-time employment contract


10 000 PLN/month That is the gross/gross amount including employer's expense. It would be the subject of taxes, social and health insurances and other legal deductions according to polish law.

Position starts on


Maximum planned period of contract/stipend agreement

12 months, with a possible extension up to 48 months

We offer

  1. Position with 100% focus on research (no teaching obligations).
  2. Benefits including a reduced rate for an individual private medical healthcare package and membership in the MultiSport programme.
  3. Full technical, administrative and organisational support from professional English-speaking personnel.
  4. Participation in courses, scientific training, support from peers, and academic mentoring.

Career development prospects at IPC PAS

Career development prospects at IChF:

  • The successful candidate will be part of a Soft Condensed Matter Group in IChF.
  • Opportunity to advance scientific knowledge and gain experience in the research at the border of biological science and physical chemistry in project.
  • Opportunity to work in a dynamic, multidisciplinary team of experienced chemists, engineers and biologists.
  • Participation in international conferences and Erasmus+ programmes.

More details

see website

Scientific discipline

Chemistry, Physical Chemistry

Scientific profile of a candidate

Recognised Researcher (R2)


We are looking for an experimentalist with strong theoretical background in chemistry to cope with the physicochemical problems in physical chemistry and cell biology. We guarantee access to top-notch instrumentation and well equipped laboratories.

Requirements for the candidate – the candidate:

  1. holds PhD (obtained no earlier than 7 years before the starting year of the employment in the project (this period might be longer due to family reasons (according to NCN rules): This period may be extended by a time of long-term (in excess of 90 days) documented sick leaves or rehabilitation leaves granted on account of being unfit to work. In addition, the period may be extended by the number of months of a child care leave granted pursuant to the Labour Code and in the case of women, by 18 months for every child born or adopted, whichever manner of accounting for career breaks is preferable. The candidate is not eligible to apply if his/her doctoral degree has been awarded by the Institute of Physical Chemistry PAS (see competition documentation of the National Science Center (NCS) for the OPUS 21) in chemical sciences or related fields;
  2. has solid knowledge in FCS technique (Fluorescent Correlation Spectroscopy) and experience at work in the cell culture laboratory;
  3. has published at least one publication as the first author in an international peer-reviewed journal;
  4. has the ability to prepare reports, communicate with Team Members, present results (also during the conferences) and prepare draft scientific papers for academic journals in English;
  5. has excellent ability to work independently and in a high-performing team.

Key assessment criteria

The Recruitment Commission will take into account the following criteria:

a) competencies of candidates for specific tasks in a research project (max 60 points),

b) previous scientific achievements of candidates (max 30 points),

c) awards and distinctions of the candidate resulting from the conducted research (10 points).

The commission evaluates applications on a point scale (max 100 points).

Required documents

1. Professional curriculum vitae, including:
- list of publications with the indication of a maximum of five most important works carried out in the last 5 years (after deduction of breaks in research work), patent applications, patents, implementations, research projects; 
- at least one opinion of the candidate, issued by an independent researcher;
- correspondence address and / or e-mail address and telephone number of the candidate,
2. a cover letter not exceeding 3,500 characters (1 A4 page) containing concise information on scientific / professional interests, achievements to date, possible participation in research projects and own research interests, 
3. scans of University degree diploma and PhD Diploma (chemistry or related discipline),
4. the candidate's declaration that he/she has become acquainted with the General Rules Governing Competitions for Research Posts at IChF in Warsaw
The incomplete applications will be not considered.

Recruitment procedure

The position will be awarded in accordance with the NCN regulations: and in accordance with the Employment policy of the Institute of Physical Chemistry PAS

How to Apply: Send application directly to;

IMPORTANT! email subject: “Recruitment no. 2/2022”

Top candidates will be invited for an online or in-person interview. Good command of English is required. We reserve the right to contact and reply to only selected candidates.

Only candidates with a minimum of 70 points would be considered for the position. A position will be offered to the person who obtains the highest number of points. The Recruitment Committee may not recommend any candidate for the position if no candidate would get at least 70 points.

The results of the competition are made public.

Candidates who have been issued a negative opinion by the Recruitment Committee or candidates not selected for employment have the right to appeal against the results of the evaluation. The appeal shall be lodged with the Director of the Institute within 7 days from the date of receipt of the appropriate information. The decision of the Director of the Institute shall be final.

If the top candidate does not sign the contract due to the resignation, we reserve the right to choose the next candidate from the ranking list.

Additional information

Application deadline

28.02.2022 23:59

Deadline for the settlement of the competition


Archival announcement. We would like to thank all candidates for their submitted applications.

Date of announcement: 26.01.2022

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