Recent advances in DNA-based computing have shown that digital logic can be implemented using molecules. However, living systems use enzymatic reaction networks to sense and respond to their environment, to maintain homeostasis, and to grow and divide. Each of these processes are examples of molecular systems performing analogue computing steps. Although living systems do not compete with modern silicon-based devices on speed, they are capable of highly parallelised information processing using very little energy. Harnessing the power of reaction networks could lead to a paradigm shift in sustainable solutions to information processing, using complex molecular systems capable of carrying out complex computations.
Position 1: As a PhD candidate you will synthesize and screen libraries of peptides that can act as reversible inhibitors and slow substrates for a range of proteases that are part of an enzymatic reaction network. These networks will be able to process information encoded in small peptide sequences and are operated in microfluidic reactors. You will construct such reactors and study the dynamic output of small enzymatic networks.
Position 2: As a PhD candidate, you will work on the design and construction of enzymatic reaction networks that can perform analogue computing functions. You will develop methods to encode complex functions, and combine multiple reactors to assemble multi-layer neural networks.
Both candidates will work as part of a team consisting of chemists, biochemists, microfluidics engineers and computer scientists, in which each member contributes their own expertise to the overall goal of constructing a molecular computer based on enzymatic reaction networks.
You will communicate your findings through publications in peer-reviewed journals and at international conferences. You will also be involved in training and teaching BSc and MSc students.
Fixed-term contract: you will be appointed for an initial period of 18 months, after which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is positive, the contract will be extended by 2.5 years.
We want to get the best out of science, others and ourselves. Why? Because this is what the world around us desperately needs. Leading research and education make an indispensable contribution to a healthy, free world with equal opportunities for all. This is what unites the more than 22,000 students and 5,000 employees at Radboud University. And this requires even more talent, collaboration and lifelong learning. You have a part to play!
As a PhD Candidate, you will be part of the Physical-Organic Chemistry group at Radboud University (Nijmegen, The Netherlands) and work with Prof. Wilhelm Huck. Our group is part of Theme 2, Chemistry of Complex Systems, of the Institute for Molecules and Materials (IMM).
For more information about this vacancy, please contact:
Prof. dr. Wilhelm Huck, Full Professor
Tel.: +31 24 365 21 38
Houtlaan 4, 6525 XZ, Nijmegen
This application process is managed by the employer (Radboud University). Please contact the employer for questions regarding your application.
Make sure to apply no later than 16 Aug 2020 23:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).
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