Institute of Physical Chemistry Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland TEAM 10: Soft Condensed Matter Group
National Science Centre
Project title, type and project number
Nanoplastics in living cells, OPUS no. 2021/41/B/ST4/00464, 2/2022
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 https://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/publications/microplastics-indrinking-water/en/ ).
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.
Number of vacancies
Key responsibilities include
1. Sample preparation
3. Data analysis
5. Preparing publications
Position in the project
Postdoctoral Researcher position
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
Career development prospects at IPC PAS
Career development prospects at IChF:
More detailssee website
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:
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).
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.
The position will be awarded in accordance with the NCN regulations: https://ncn.gov.pl/sites/default/files/pliki/uchwaly-rady/2019/uchwala25_2019-zal1.pdf and in accordance with the Employment policy of the Institute of Physical Chemistry PAS https://ichf.edu.pl/files/csr/ipc-procedures.pdf.
How to Apply: Send application directly to email@example.com;
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.
More details about the project:
Deadline for the settlement of the competition
Archival announcement. We would like to thank all candidates for their submitted applications.