PhD carbon control and antibiotic production in Streptomyces

PhD carbon control and antibiotic production in Streptomyces

Published Deadline Location
14 Mar 4 Apr Leiden

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Job description

The Faculty of Science / the Institute for Biology is looking for a :

PhD carbon control and antibiotic production in Streptomyces 
Vacancy number: 23-191

Job description
Streptomyces are bacteria commonly found in soils with the capacity to produce a wide range of natural products that we harness for clinical, biotechnological and agricultural applications. Streptomyces bacteria are usually grown in isolation and in laboratory media that do not accurately mimic the complexity of their natural habitat. Primary (carbon) metabolism has a strong impact on specialised metabolism, including antibiotic production. The efficiency of antibiotic production depends a lot on the specific culturing conditions. A key element of this research project is the so-called lab-soil dichotomy, in other words, the large difference between growth of bacteria in the laboratory and in the complex natural habitat. We seek to bridge this huge knowledge gap, and you will investigate the effect of carbon utilization at the transcriptional and metabolic level, in the laboratory and in soil. This will provide better insights into how the bacteria respond to changing nutritional conditions and how we can harness that for the activation of specialised metabolism.
You will apply microbiology and molecular biology techniques, systems biology such as ChIP-seq and Dap-Seq (DNA affinity purification sequencing) to identify the genome-wide distribution of transcription factor (TF) binding sites, transcriptomics etc. Thus you will unravel the TF networks that tie primary to specialised metabolism. 


Leiden University


Qualifications and skills
•    MSc in Biology, Microbiology, Molecular Biology or similar discipline
•    Ability to perform independent research 
•    Good social and communication skills; excellent scientific writing and presentation skills.
•    Proven affinity for systems biology and bioinformatics and a particular interest in global regulatory networks
•    Excellent scientific writing and presentation skills
•    Team player with strong social skills, dedicated to innovative research combined with scientific curiosity
•    Excellent oral and written English communication skills

Conditions of employment

Terms and conditions  
We offer a  full-time 1 year term position for initially one year. After a positive evaluation of the progress of the thesis, personal capabilities and compatibility the appointment will be extended by a further three years. Salary range from € 2.541 to € 3.245 gross per month (pay scale P in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities). 

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. 

All our PhD students are embedded in the Leiden University Graduate School of Science Our graduate school offers several PhD training courses at three levels: professional courses, skills training and personal effectiveness. In addition, advanced courses to deepen scientific knowledge are offered by the research school.

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.


Research at our faculty
The Faculty of Science is a world-class faculty where staff and students work together in a dynamic international environment. It is a faculty where personal and academic development are top priorities. Our people are committed to expand fundamental knowledge by curiosity and to look beyond the borders of their own discipline; their aim is to benefit science, and to make a contribution to addressing the major societal challenges of the future. 

The research carried out at the Faculty of Science is very diverse, ranging from mathematics, information science, astronomy, physics, chemistry and bio-pharmaceutical sciences to biology and environmental sciences. The research activities are organised in eight institutes. These institutes offer eight bachelor’s and twelve master’s programmes. The faculty has grown strongly in recent years and now has almost 2800 staff and more than 6000  students. We are located at the heart of Leiden’s Bio Science Park, one of Europe’s biggest science parks, where university and business life come together. 

For more information, see and 

The Institute for Biology
The research within the Institute of Biology Leiden (IBL) aims to work on the science base of biodiversity and health, which is reflected in our leading principle Harnessing Biodiversity for Health. We perform innovative curiosity-driven research to answer fundamental questions, and solutions-driven research to help solving major societal challenges. The latter include protecting nature’s biodiversity, creating sustainable biotechnology and agriculture and increasing good health. Our research focuses on four Research Themes: Bioactive Molecules, Host-Microbe Interactions, Development & Disease and Evolution & Biodiversity. Located in a thriving scientific environment with our Faculty of Sciences,  Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, the Leiden University Medical Centre and the Leiden Bioscience Park, IBL offers an exciting, internationally oriented and inclusive place to work and study.   


  • PhD
  • 23-191



Rapenburg, 2311 VJ, Leiden

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