Postdoc position in iPSC-based modeling of human neurodevelopmental disorders

100%, Basel, fixed-term

The BioEngineering Laboratory at the Department of Biosystems of ETH Zurich in Basel is inviting applications for a 2-year postdoc position for projects at the intersection of human cellular modelling, large-scale electrophysiology, gene therapy and multi-modal data analysis. You will work at the ETH Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering (BSSE) and closely collaborate with groups at the Roche Institute for Translational Bioengineering (ITB), the Roche Innovation Center (pRED) as well as at MaxWell Biosystems. The preferred starting date is October 2022; the exact starting date can be negotiated.

Project background

Human iPSC-derived cellular models are transforming our ability to probe the mechanisms and pathogenic drivers of neurodevelopmental diseases. As it is now possible to generate stem-cell-derived neural cells in a highly reproducible and scalable manner from any healthy/diseased individual, there are realistic prospects for progress in our understanding of the specific pathogenetic mechanisms underlying neurodevelopmental diseases and the development of personalized treatments.

Job description

We will characterize 2D and 3D iPSC-derived human cellular models of Rett and dup15q syndrome using high-throughput large-scale extracellular electrophysiology (high-density microelectrode arrays), patch-clamping and single-cell genomic methods – and attempt phenotype rescues using pharmacological and gene-therapeutic interventions.

The Postdoc will collaborate and lead activities in a highly interdisciplinary project that aims at gaining mechanistic insights into neurodevelopmental disorders using a comprehensive multi-modal description of human iPSC-derived human cellular models in healthy and diseased states.

The main activities and responsibilities will include:

  • generation and maintenance of in vitro human cellular models
  • electrophysiological and optical functional characterization measurements as well as analysis of the acquired data
  • treatment interventions using pharmacological and genetic approaches
  • guidance and supervision of practical work of other team members (PhD students).

Your profile

For this highly interdisciplinary project, you must have a PhD degree and significant research expertise in either neuroscience, stem cell biology or molecular/cell biology. Moreover, desirable skills include expertise in the generation of human iPSC-derived neuronal cultures, and expertise in extracellular recordings and/or whole-cell patch clamp recordings in vitro. Large-scale data acquisition and analysis as well as programming experience are a plus.

Being successful in interdisciplinary work in the fields of microtechnology/medicine/biology requires excellent communication skills and a highly proactive work attitude. You must be able to fluently communicate in English (oral and written) and be willing to work and take over leadership in a highly interactive international environment with master and PhD students. The activities will also include project management and, potentially, the acquisition of new national and international projects.

The position is planned for 2 years.

Your workplace

We offer

ETH Zurich is a family-friendly employer with excellent working conditions. You can look forward to an exciting working environment, cultural diversity and attractive offers and benefits.

Working, teaching and research at ETH Zurich

We value diversity

In line with our values, ETH Zurich encourages an inclusive culture. We promote equality of opportunity, value diversity and nurture a working and learning environment in which the rights and dignity of all our staff and students are respected. Visit our Equal Opportunities and Diversity website to find out how we ensure a fair and open environment that allows everyone to grow and flourish.

Curious? So are we.

We look forward to receiving your online application by September 30th 2022: 

A complete application package includes

  • a short and specific motivation statement for the advertised position (1/2 page)
  • complete academic transcripts
  • an up-to-date CV
  • and recommendation letters or contact information for 2-3 potential referees.

Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications submitted via e-mail or postal services or incomplete application packages will not be considered.

Further information about the Bio Engineering Laboratory can be found on our website www.bel.ethz.ch. For more information on the position, please contact Dr Manuel Schröter (manuel.schroeter@bsse.ethz.ch).

About ETH Zürich

ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.