Dioscuri Centre for Physics and Chemistry of Bacteria Institute of Physical Chemistry PAS Warsaw, Poland
National Science Centre (NCN), Poland
Project title, type and project number
Transition from genetic to phenotypic antibiotic resistance in de novo bacterial mutants Funded through OPUS-22, 2021/43/B/NZ1/01436, 53/2022
Dr Bartłomiej Wacław
The purpose of this project is to investigate the population dynamics of antibiotic-resistant mutants of the bacterium E.coli immediately after their emergence due to spontaneous mutations.
Number of vacancies
Key responsibilities include
We seek two post-doctoral researchers: one with experience in optical imaging and/or microfluidics, and another one in microbiology, genetic engineering of bacteria and whole-genome sequencing to contribute to the project “Transition from genetic to phenotypic antibiotic resistance in de novo bacterial mutants”.
The project will involve (i) genetic engineering of E. coli strains to enable CRISPR/Cas9-based imaging of de novo mutations in live bacterial cells, (ii) designing and creating a microfluidic device suitable for live imaging of 1 billion bacterial cells, (iii) tracking antibiotic-resistant spontaneous mutants that evolve in the device, measuring their growth rate over several generations, and sequencing their DNA to reveal the nature of genetic alterations. Other team members will use mathematical modelling to interpret the data and predict the effect of the genotype-to phenotype transition on the dynamics of bacterial infections.
1. Planning and execution of specific elements of the research program, acting under general guidance of the supervisor. This will involve deciding (with the supervisor) on the detailed direction of the research, formulating a strategy for day-to-day research work, implementing the strategy (without close supervision), interpreting obtained data, drawing conclusions, and reporting progress to the supervisor.
2. Communicating research results to team members and collaborators at IPC and other institutions through talks and discussions, as well as learning about others’ research through seminars and journal clubs.
3. Assisting with supervision of junior researchers (Master and PhD students), where appropriate.
4. Writing reports and scientific papers.
5. Attending and presenting at workshops and conferences.
6. Keeping up-to-date with relevant scientific developments through literature review.
Position in the project
A postdoctoral researcher. Post-doc (<7 years since PhD as of 1 Jan 2023. Extensions possible due to maternity or sick leave)
Gross salary 11000 PLN/month (net salary approx. 8700 PLN, approximately 1800 EUR).
Position starts on
Maximum planned period of contract/stipend agreement
The position is initially for 1 year, after which it may be extended for another 2 years (maximum total duration 3 years) subject to satisfactory performance
The successful candidate will benefit from working in an international, interdisciplinary research group, and a newly refurbished, modern lab and office space. The candidate will work closely with other experimentalists and modellers from the Dioscuri Centre. The candidate will have an opportunity to visit other research groups in Europe and to participate in international workshops and conferences.
More detailssee website
Biology, Physics, or Chemistry
Scientific profile of a candidate
Recognised Researcher (R2)
• PhD held or to be completed before the job start date in physics, chemistry, microbiology, or bioengineering.
• Hands-on experience in optical imaging and/or microfluidics, including image analysis (ImageJ, Python, or Matlab) OR expertise in microbiology and genetic engineering of E. coli
• Very good academic achievements as evidenced by peer-reviewed publications and talks/poster presentations at international conferences.
• Ability to draft (in English) scientific papers for academic journals.
• Ability to communicate (in English) complex information clearly, orally and in writing.
• Ability to think creatively, propose and develop new ideas.
• Capability of working without close supervision, exercising a high degree of initiative and demonstrating a pro-active approach to work.
• Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships.
• Enthusiasm for learning basic microbiology techniques.
• Experience in developing DIY microscopes or other optical imaging devices OR experience with CRISPR/Cas9
• Experience with automated epi-fluorescent microscopes and Micromanager (software for controlling microscopes)
• Microfluidics experience
• Experience with software for designing microfluidic chips such as AutoCAD OR experience with DNA sequencing (DNA isolation, library prep, variant calling).
• Experience in cross-disciplinary and / or collaborative research projects.
• Ability to communicate with researchers with different scientific backgrounds.
• Ability to adapt to new ideas and willingness to approach new challenges and adjust plans to suit new priorities.
• Ability to work hard and organise work so as to perform multiple tasks simultaneously.
• Ability to maintain a clean and well-organised laboratory environment and to set up and maintain a well-organised digital repository of experimental data and protocols.
• Potential for career advancement as an independent researcher.
Key assessment criteria
Experience as detailed above, publication track record, performance during the interview
• motivation letter
• professional curriculum vitae
• list of publications
• personal data processing consent
• two letters of reference (to be sent independently by two supporters)
All documents (including the reference letters) should be emailed to email@example.com quoting “Rekrutacja nr 53/2022” in the subject line.
About the Dioscuri Centre
The Centre’s main objective is to better understand bacterial growth and evolution in the natural environment of pathogenic bacteria: the interior of an animal cell and animal secretions. The members of the Centre use experimental in vitro models of infections, computer simulations and mathematical theory to create data driven, quantitative models of bacterial growth and evolution in these environments. Research performed in the Centre will contribute towards the understanding of bacterial infections and the evolution of antimicrobial resistance in animal and human hosts. The Centre collaborates with research institutions in Germany, the UK and the US. The Centre is co-funded by the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, with additional support coming from NAWA.
Deadline for the settlement of the competition
Archival announcement. We would like to thank all candidates for their submitted applications.