Postdoc position in the genetics of metabolism in newborns: Copenhagen

15. februar, 2015

A 2-year Postdoc position in the genetics of metabolism in newborns is available at Statens Serum Institut.

Deadline for application: 15 February 2015

We are seeking a highly motivated postdoctoral researcher to lead the analyses of large-scale genetics and metabolomics data from newborns in a research project at the Department of Epidemiology Research, Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark. The position is made available through funding from The Danish Council for Independent Research | Medical Sciences.

About us
Denmark’s comprehensive and interwoven nation-wide health registers linked with a national biobank with more than 15 million biospecimens provide preeminent opportunities for groundbreaking biomedical research. At the Department of Epidemiology Research we pursue these opportunities at the highest level of ambition. Recent examples include studies of urinary tract malformations (Nat Genet 2014, 46: 957-63), febrile seizures (Nat Genet 2014, 46:1274-82), and pyloric stenosis (Nat Genet 2012, 44:334-37; JAMA 2013, 710:714-21). Our research environment is young, vibrant and international, boasting dedicated researchers with backgrounds in genetics, bioinformatics, epidemiology, medicine, statistics and biology. Statens Serum Institut is located close to the center of Copenhagen, which consistently ranks among the most liveable cities in the world.

Description of the project
Little is known about the genetic regulation of metabolism in newborn infants and the possible influence on disease. Here, we will use cutting-edge mass spectrometry methodology on dried blood spot samples obtained through the routine Danish neonatal screening program. We will integrate the resulting high-dimensional metabolomics data with genome-wide SNP data aiming to (1) identify genetic determinants of metabolite levels in healthy newborns, and to (2) investigate the combined effect of genetic variants and metabolite levels on risk of specific diseases, such as pyloric stenosis.
The successful candidate will be supervised directly by Dr. Bjarke Feenstra. Besides the specific project, you will have the opportunity to work with a large portfolio of data collections including diagnosis and surgery codes from health registers linked with high-density genomics and metabolomics data. There will also be good opportunities to participate in large-scale international collaborations and to develop new research ideas.

We expect you to be a highly independent, creative, enthusiastic and ambitious scientist with the following qualifications:
• A Ph.D. or equivalent degree in statistical genetics, bioinformatics, genetic epidemiology, computational biology or a related field
• An excellent scientific track record, including at least one publication as first author in a high-quality, peer reviewed international journal
• Documented experience in analysis of large-scale ‘omics’ data
• Proficiency in one or more core programming languages and familiarity with linux/unix
• Good communication skills in English, both oral and written.

In return, we offer good opportunities to further your scientific career in a strong research environment with exceptional data from Danish health registers and large biobanks. We emphasize collaboration between researchers and value a positive working environment.

Conditions of employment
The employment will be in accordance with the terms of the collective agreement between the Ministry of Finance’s circular concerning the job structure for scientific staff working with research at sector research institutions and the organization of Academics or the Danish Society of Engineers.

The successful applicant will be hired as a postdoctoral fellow for an initial 2-year period. The possibility exists for extension after this initial period depending on funding and performance. The position is available from April 1st 2015, or after agreement.

Further information
For further details and enquiries, please contact senior research scientist Bjarke Feenstra at +45 3268 3852 or by e-mail

Please submit your application no later than February 15th 2015 via or Your application must include a cover letter describing your motivation, CV (including education and experience), list of publications in peer reviewed journals, transcript of university examinations (in English or Danish), names and contact details for two job references. The research qualifications will be assessed by an expert committee set up under the current job structure for scientific staff working with research at sector research institutions.