ESR 9 & 10


2 PhD student positions in zebrafish models of vascular anomalies

Young, modern, and research oriented, the University of Potsdam has firmly established itself within the scientific landscape since its founding in 1991. Nationally and internationally renowned scientists teach and perform research here at Brandenburg’s largest university. The University of Potsdam is successful in acquiring third-party funds, delivers outstanding performance in technology and knowledge transfer, and has a very service-oriented administration. With about 20,000 students studying at three campuses – Am Neuen Palais, Griebnitzsee and Golm – the University of Potsdam is a prominent economic factor and engine of development for the region. The University of Potsdam has a total of about 2,750 faculty and staff members and is located in one of Germany’s most scenic areas.

As participant of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network V.A. Cure, we announce two PhD student positions in molecular biology/ genetics/ cell biology which will focus on zebrafish vascular biology, entitled

Zebrafish models of vascular development and disease (ESRs 9 and 10).

The Innovative Training Network (ITN) V.A. Cure trains Early-Stage Researchers (ESR) through collaborative research between Belgium, France, Germany, Sweden and Finland.

Job description

The project aims to study the molecular mechanisms involved in diseases that are causing vascular anomalies. In our lab, we use genetic disease models in the zebrafish embryo, which has a relatively simple cardiovascular system compared with its mammalian counterparts. This will allow us to characterize pathological signaling events that are involved in vascular malformations. We would like to understand: What are the pathological signals that cause the abnormal morphogenesis of blood vessels? To what extent does the molecular identity of different vascular beds modify the progression towards a pathological state? How do endothelial cell behaviors change in response to pathological signaling? Can we use pharmacological screens to identify substances that suppress pathological vascular signaling?

Besides the thorough technical and scientific training, the Early Stage Researcher will get the opportunity to receive high quality training in

  • State-of-the-art technologies including next-generation sequencing
  • CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing to generate zebrafish models of human pathologies
  • Pharmacological suppression screens
  • Confocal and light sheet microscopy
  • Working in a large and modern zebrafish facility


We are looking for highly motivated and enthusiastic applicants (m/f/d) that have completed an M.A. degree with experience in molecular biology, cell biology, or developmental biology/genetics. We expect excellent communications skills in English.

Very important:

  • Applicants may not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Germany for more than 12 months in the last 3 years. Short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
  • Applicants must be researchers who have not yet been awarded the doctorate degree and are in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent) of their research careers. This includes the period of research training, starting at the date of obtaining the degree which would formally entitle them to embark on a doctorate either in the country in which the degree was obtained, irrespective whether or not a doctorate is envisaged.

Appointment terms

The PhD student(s) will be appointed by the University of Potsdam under an employment contract for a full-time position (40 hours/week). The position is initially available for three years with the possibility of an extension. Salary will be commensurate to the monthly Living Allowance, Mobility Allowance and Family Allowance (if applicable) for Early Stage Researchers stated by the European Commission. The Allowances will be paid to the researcher(s) in monthly instalments. Local tax and social security regulations will apply.

How to apply

– Make sure you meet the qualifying requirements.

– Submit your application to by e-mail. Please send one pdf file containing:

  • A motivation letter describing your research career goals, skills and experience (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma (in English or with a translation into English)
  • Two letters of recommendation or the contact information for at least 2 referees.

Deadline for submitting applications: 22 May 2019

More information

Please visit for more information on the project, the recruitment process and selection criteria. Contact for questions about these positions is Prof. Dr. Salim Seyfried:


Handicapped applicants will be given preference in case of equal suitability. The University of Potsdam strives to increase the proportion of women in research and teaching and specifically encourages female applicants to apply for these positions.