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ResearchZernike (ZIAM)Molecular BiophysicsVlijm group

Available positions/projects


We are looking for two enthusiastic PhD candidates, preferably with experience in programming, optics or cell biology, for our research on protein dynamics. If you are interested in joining, you can apply . For any questions, please contact r.vlijm .

Job description

In these projects, the PhD students will work on developing methods to study protein structures during cell division. Cell division is an extremely dynamic process, and errors in this phase of the cell cycle have far-reaching consequences. Studying the protein dynamics at relevant scale is not trivial, as the dynamical interplay is at scales much smaller than the diffraction limit of light, and thus beyond the reach of traditional microscopes. Stimulated Emission Depletion (STED) microscopy on the other hand does allow imaging with a resolution of 30 nanometers even in living cells.

The candidates will work on the development of new labeling, imaging and analysis approaches for STED microscopy, optimized for the imaging of dynamic protein structures in the nuclei of living cells. The work will be diverse, as it will include among others the (life cell) sample preparation, hardware modification, programming and (automation of) data analysis.

The candidates will work closely together both with colleagues in the international and interdisciplinary research environment of the Molecular Biophysics group at the Zernike Institute, as well as with several labs in the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB) and several international collaborators.


  • a European master’s degree (or equivalent) in (bio)physics, nanoscience, (bio)informatics, life sciences or a related area
  • an excellent track record
  • highly motivated and able to work in a multidisciplinary and international work environment
  • excellent communication skills in both oral and written English.
  • Experience in programming, optics or cell biology is desirable but not mandatory.

MSc and BSc projects

We are always looking for talented Master and Bachelor students to work on the truly interdisciplinary research in our lab. Are you interested and do you have a background in (bio)physics, nanoscience, (bio)informatics, life sciences or a related area’s ? Contact Rifka Vlijm ( to discuss possible projects and the involved methods and skills you can learn, while working on them.

Last modified:30 September 2019 09.22 a.m.