Postdoc position in omics analyses of the placenta, Copenhagen, Denmark

18. november, 2020

Link to job ad:

We are seeking a highly motivated postdoctoral researcher to lead analyses of diverse large-scale omics data to unveil molecular mechanisms in the human placenta that influence growth, fetal development and timing of parturition. The successful candidate will join the genetic epidemiology group at the Department of Epidemiology Research, Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark.

About us
Linkage of information from Denmark’s comprehensive, nationwide health registers with millions of banked biospecimens provides unique opportunities for groundbreaking biomedical research. We pursue such opportunities with great ambition: recent examples of our top-tier research include studies of pregnancy duration (NEJM 2017, 377:1156-1167; Nat Comms 2019, 10:3927), and various childhood conditions, including urinary tract malformations (Nat Genet 2014, 46:957-63), pyloric stenosis (JAMA 2013, 710:714-21; HMG 2019; 28:332–340), and febrile seizures (Nat Genet 2014, 46:1274-82).

Our research environment is built on a vision of scientific curiosity, ambition and thoroughness mixed with openness, kindness, and playfulness, and boasts dedicated researchers with backgrounds in genetics, bioinformatics, epidemiology, medicine, statistics, and biology. You will join the genetic epidemiology group at the Department of Epidemiology Research at Statens Serum Institut, which is located close to the center of Copenhagen, consistently ranked among the most liveable cities in the world.

The project
The human placenta is a remarkable transient organ of pregnancy, but despite its importance, our current understanding of its physiology is far from complete. In this project, we will use advanced technologies and analytical approaches to enhance our molecular-level understanding of the placental mechanisms that ensure appropriate fetal growth and development and timely parturition. Our aims are:

  • To characterize genetic regulation of gene expression levels in placental samples collected after birth
  • To perform genome-wide association study (GWAS) analyses of placental weight
  • To analyze RNA sequencing data from maternal blood collected through pregnancy and detect and characterize placenta-specific gene expression patterns.

You will be responsible for driving forward scientific studies addressing these aims and you will be the main data scientist analyzing the data. In addition to this you will be authoring and co-authoring manuscripts for high-impact scientific journals and you will present work at conferences and collaborative meetings. The project will be performed in collaboration with research groups in Denmark, Norway, and the UK. You will be supervised by Dr. Bjarke Feenstra, leader of the department’s genetic epidemiology group. Alongside the specific project, the postdoctoral fellow will have the opportunity to work with other large data collections and to develop new research ideas. The position also involves identifying sources of funding and contributing to the process of securing funds

Your education, experience and personal qualifications
We expect you to be a highly independent, creative, enthusiastic and ambitious scientist with the following qualifications:

  • A PhD or equivalent degree in computational biology, bioinformatics, statistical genetics, genetic epidemiology, or a related field
  • Strong data science and statistical skills
  • Documented experience in analysis of large-scale ‘omics’ data
  • Good communication skills in English, both oral and written
  • Proficiency in one or more core programming languages and familiarity with linux/unix
  • An attention to detail and a drive for rigor
  • An excellent scientific track record, including at least one publication as first author in a high-quality, peer reviewed international journal.

In return, we offer good opportunities to further your scientific career in a strong research group with exceptional data and to build your scientific network through contact with our many international collaborators. We emphasize teamwork and value a positive working environment.

Conditions of employment
You will be hired as a postdoctoral fellow for an initial 2-year period. The position is available from 1 January 2021, or after agreement. The employment period is for two years. The possibility exists for extension after the initial two-year period depending on funding and performance.

The employment will be in accordance with the terms of the collective agreement between the Ministry of Finance and the Danish Federation of Professional Associations and the Danish Ministry of Finance’s circular concerning the job structure for scientific staff working with research at sector research institutions (Stillingsstruktur for videnskabeligt personale med forskningsopgaver ved sektorforskningsinstitutionerne).

Further information
For further details and inquiries, please contact Senior Research Scientist Bjarke Feenstra at (+45) 3268 3852.

Please submit your application online by clicking “ansøg stillingen”. Your application must include a cover letter describing your motivation, CV (including education and experience), a list of publications in peer-reviewed journals, transcript of university examinations (in English or Danish), names, and contact details for two job references.