PhD position available in membrane protein structural biology

Brussels VIB-VUB Center for Structural Biology

25 Jun 2022


VIB-VUB Center for Structural Biology

Janine Brunner Lab



04 Jul 2022

1 Ph.D. position is available in the newly established Brunner lab at VIB-VUB Center for Structural Biology in Brussels, Belgium to work on the structure and function of membrane proteins.

We offer

VIB is an excellence-based entrepreneurial institute that focuses on translating basic scientific results into pharmaceutical, agricultural and industrial applications. VIB Center for Structural Biology Brussels is associated to the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and houses research groups with strong expertise in protein biochemistry, biophysics, nanobody technology, X-ray crystallography, NMR and electron microscopy.

Our group is interested in the structure and function of mammalian lipid transporters and in the membrane biology of the cell. In another line of research, we study the biophysics of ion channels of the endomembrane system and their role in neurodegenerative or neurological diseases such as Parkinson Disease. To advance our understanding in these fields we combine functional characterization (liposomal and cellular assays, fluorescence microscopy, electrophysiology) with a structural description of the involved proteins using cryo-EM and X-ray crystallography. Further details on available topics will be discussed during the interviews.

You will have access to state-of-the-art research facilities such as the VIB-VUB facility for Bio Electron Cryogenic Microscopy equipped with a 300 kV JEOL cryoARM300 electron microscope and K3 detector as well as the VIB Nanobody Core.

Ph.D. students will have access to extensive scientific and transferable skills training programs available through our affiliated institutes.

Start of the Ph.D. student position can be negotiated, but an immediate start would be preferred.

Ph.D. students are further encouraged to apply for an FWO-fellowship to acquire their own funding (call deadline March 2022). Candidates will be fully assisted with the funding application.


You are an enthusiastic, highly motivated and curiosity-driven personality with a strong background in biochemistry/biology/biotechnology and interest in membrane proteins and organelle biology. Independent and critical thinking and good organizational skills are a prerequisite. You hold a university degree in biochemistry/biology or in a related discipline. Hands-on experience with either protein purification, cryo-EM or mammalian cell culture is required.

How to apply?

Motivated candidates are asked to apply online. Enquiries should be addressed to

VIB values diversity - in backgrounds and in experiences. The institute needs people from all backgrounds and ways of life to help build a thriving scientific environment. VIB is therefore looking for candidates who are not only strong in their own aptitudes but care deeply about supporting each other's growth. VIB's collaborators are people with different strengths, experiences and backgrounds, who share a passion for science that generates impact in science and in society. Diversity not only includes race and gender identity, but also nationality, age, disability status, sexual orientation, religion and many other parts of ones identity. All of VIB's employees' points of view are key to its success, and inclusion is everyone's responsibility.