Postdoctoral researchers on a cell therapy for cornea regeneration at the MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine, Maastricht University

Postdoctoral researchers on a cell therapy for cornea regeneration at the MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine, Maastricht University

Published Deadline Location
2 Aug 28 Aug Maastricht

Job description

We seek two postdoctoral researchers to join our team developing cell therapies for ophthalmic diseases and conditions. The overall aim of this project is to bring a cell therapy for corneal endothelial disease into the clinic. We are working in a public–private partnership to optimize the cell biology in vitro, perform pre-clinical studies, and initiate a clinical study.

These positions are ideally suited to researchers with the ambition to work on a highly translational project. In addition to challenging scientific aims, we seek someone who wants to participate in the other elements of a successful cell therapy, such as designing (pre-)clinical trials, obtaining ethical approval, and monitoring intellectual property developments.

Briefly, our focus in this project is to develop a cell therapy for the corneal endothelium. Patients with corneal endothelial disease are currently treated by corneal transplantation. This is a largely successful procedure, but the increasing numbers of transplantations worldwide have created an urgent global tissue shortage. In order to tackle this scarcity, reliable sources of corneal endothelial cells are needed. These can be both primary cultures (expanded in large numbers from a single donor) or derived from pluripotent stem cells. We are working on therapies from both sources. Our position on the field can be read in a recent review (Catala et al. Prog Retin Eye Res 2022).

Specifications

Maastricht University (UM)

Requirements

Applicants should possess a PhD in a relevant field (e.g., in the biomedical sciences, molecular biology, cell biology, or regenerative medicine) or have experience that demonstrates their affinity for this topic if they have a different educational background.

We are open to postdoctoral researchers with different levels of experience and can offer leadership opportunities on the project for those at a more senior level.

The ideal applicant has the following skills:

  • Molecular biology, especially techniques for manipulating cell fate in vitro.
  • (Stem) cell biology, especially pluripotent stem cell differentiation.
  • Cell therapy, especially preparing for (pre-)clinical studies.
  • Animal studies.
  • Ophthalmology.

We realize most applicants will not possess all of the above skills. Please considering applying if you have at least three of the above five.

We are looking for creative thinkers who are prepared to take on highly challenging aims. The project will be very translational and will suit an ambitious candidate who likes a fast-paced environment with well-defined research aims. Excellent knowledge of scientific English for speaking, reading, and writing are required. Knowledge of Dutch is not required.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 1+3 years. The selected applicant will undergo an evaluation after 1 year, after which a decision is made to prolong the contract or not. We can offer up to 4 years of funding, but are also open to shorter contracts if preferred.
The salary scale is based on years of experience, but the gross monthly pay for a postdoctoral researcher is typically in the range of € 2,960–€ 4,670 gross per month (on a full-time basis) of the Dutch university collective bargaining agreement. An 8% holiday and an 8.3% year-end allowance is also provided.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website www.maastrichtuniversity.nl > About UM > Working at UM.

Employer

Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 22,000 students and 5,000 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.
For more information, visit www.maastrichtuniversity.nl.

Department

MERLN Institute and University Eye Clinic Maastricht

The successful candidate will have a cross-disciplinary supervision team comprising Dr Mor Dickman (University Eye Clinic Maastricht) and Dr Vanessa LaPointe (MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine). The research will be performed in the laboratory of Dr LaPointe at the MERLN Institute at Maastricht University (www.merlninstitute.com). At MERLN, we are a collaborative, international, and interdisciplinary group with diverse expertise, including biomaterials science, chemistry, tissue engineering, and (stem) cell biology. We share newly renovated laboratory facilities with modern equipment. We have a long history as leaders in the field of tissue engineering and are particularly well-known for our orientation towards translational research.

The University Eye Clinic/Maastricht University Medical Center+ is one the largest academic departments of ophthalmology in Europe (www.oogheelkunde.mumc.nl). The department is built on a strong foundation of medical education, research, and clinical care. Our clinicians provide care ranging from the routine to the very complex. Scientific work is focused on corneal diseases, cataract, and glaucoma, and is driven by a mission to understand and discover the basis for these conditions, and to develop treatments with a direct impact for patients and society.

Additional information

Applying from abroad?

MERLN houses researchers from across the globe who have successfully navigated the transition of moving to the Netherlands. Maastricht University is the most international university in the Netherlands. Thanks to its high-quality research and education as well as a strong focus on social engagement, Maastricht University has quickly built up a reputation as one of the best young universities in the world.

Maastricht, where we are located, is itself a warm and welcoming city. The city is known for its fine cuisine, excellent shops, and multicultural atmosphere. The founding city of the EU is an international hub with inhabitants from around the world. English is widely spoken, which has helped create a unique and vibrant international community. Thanks to Maastricht’s central position in Europe, it is only a short drive away from Belgium, Germany, France and the rest of the Netherlands. The city is family-friendly and possesses an international school and several excellent primary schools.

For those unfamiliar with the Dutch academic system, postdocs are paid a full-time salary and receive benefits along with an 8% holiday and 8.3% year-end bonus given annually. Candidates who need to relocate may be eligible for compensation. The terms of employment are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO-UNL), and local UM provisions also apply (see www.maastrichtuniversity.nl).

Application timeline

Candidates can expect to hear from us within two weeks of the deadline for applications. Short video interviews will be scheduled for long-listed candidates. Those proceeding to the second interview round will be invited to attend either an in-person interview or a longer video call, depending on restrictions due to covid-19. Travel costs will be compensated.

For more information about this position, please contact:
Dr Vanessa LaPointe, email: v.lapointe@maastrichtuniversity.nl.

To apply at this vacancy, press the button ‘apply now’ to see the application procedure.

Specifications

  • Postdoc
  • Health
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2960—€4670 per month
  • Doctorate
  • AT2022.338

Employer

Maastricht University (UM)

Learn more about this employer

Location

Universiteitssingel 40, 6229 ER, Maastricht

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Apply via postal mail

Apply via postal mail

hrm-rw-vacatures@maastrichtuniversity.nl

Don't forget to mention AcademicTransfer and the job number: AT2022.338 in your letter.

Application procedure

To apply, please submit:

  1. The application form that can be downloaded here: https://surfdrive.surf.nl/files/index.php/s/WEcC7eyk4Jfzq7p
  2. A CV.

Send your application, stating the vacancy number AT2022.338, by email to:
hrm-rw-vacatures@maastrichtuniversity.nl

Maastricht University is committed to promoting and nurturing a diverse and inclusive community. We believe that diversity in our staff and student population contributes to the quality of research and education at UM, and strive to enable this through inclusive policies and innovative projects led by teams of staff and students. We encourage you to apply for this position.

Application procedure

Application procedure

To apply, please submit:

  1. The application form that can be downloaded here: https://surfdrive.surf.nl/files/index.php/s/WEcC7eyk4Jfzq7p
  2. A CV.

Send your application, stating the vacancy number AT2022.338, by email to:
hrm-rw-vacatures@maastrichtuniversity.nl

Maastricht University is committed to promoting and nurturing a diverse and inclusive community. We believe that diversity in our staff and student population contributes to the quality of research and education at UM, and strive to enable this through inclusive policies and innovative projects led by teams of staff and students. We encourage you to apply for this position.

Make sure to apply no later than 28 Aug 2022 23:58 (Europe/Amsterdam).