Update day: 01-11-2023
- Closing date 24-10-2023
- 36 hours
- Research university
- Research & Education
- Closing date 24-10-2023
Correct gene transcription by RNA polymerase II to generate new RNA molecules is crucial for proper cell function. However, transcription by RNA polymerases can be blocked by DNA damage on the DNA template, for example by UV-light or other chemicals. Transcription-blocking DNA damage can therefore cause cellular dysfunction and cell death, eventually resulting in DNA damage-induced aging and genome instability. Cells counteract these deleterious effects by transcription-coupled repair (TCR), which specifically removes DNA damage thereby safeguarding transcription. Our lab has identified several important factors that provided novel insights in this repair pathway (e.g. van Toorn, Mol. Cell, 2022, Geijer, Nature Cell Biology, 2021, Tresini et al. Nature, 2015, Schwertman et al. Nature Genetics, 2012).
Surprisingly little is known about the molecular consequences of DNA damage on RNA polymerase itself. This is an important question to solve, as DNA damage-stalled RNA polymerase causes bigger problems for the cells than the actual DNA damage itself. In this project we will use innovative single molecule imaging procedures in combination with CRISPR-Cas9-mediated gene editing to for the first-time study the effect of DNA damage on RNA polymerases in living cells. This project will provide important molecular insights in how DNA damage affects Pol II and interferes with the transcription process, thereby improving our understanding of the cellular mechanisms that protect transcriptional integrity, which is essential to understand why organisms age.
The Department of Molecular Genetics at the Erasmus MC has a strong world-wide reputation in understanding the DNA damage responses at the molecular, cellular and physiological level. The department consists of a vibrant and international group of more than 80 researchers working on various aspects of DNA damage, DNA repair and other DNA damage related responses. This project will be carried out in the Marteijn lab at the Erasmus MC in collaborative project with the Lenstra lab at the NKI where another PhD student will work on this project. The Marteijn lab studies the molecular mechanisms how cells deal with DNA damage that interferes with transcription, using a multidisciplinary approach using molecular and cell biological approaches. Our lab works in a highly collaborative manner with a strong focus on state-of-the-art live-cell imaging, genetic and proteomic tools. Our group acts internationally at the forefront of DNA damage and transcription stress and offers a dynamic, challenging, and cooperative research environment. We offer a dynamic, challenging, and cooperative research environment and an excellent training and supervision platform through the PhD teaching program of our Erasmus MC Graduate School.
The Erasmus MC stands for a healthy population and excellence in healthcare. By conducting groundbreaking work, we aim to push boundaries through leading the way in research, education and healthcare to improve and renew the healthcare of today and the public health of tomorrow. To stimulate research, the Erasmus MC provides access to the latest equipment and techniques in a state-of-the-art environment.
Qualifications and skills
- We are looking for a highly motivated candidate with a Msc. degree in a relevant discipline (e.g. Molecular/Cell biology, Biomedical Sciences, Molecular Sciences, Nanobiology).
- Experience with the basal transcription process, DNA damage response or with live cell imaging is an advantage but not essential.
- The candidate should be able to independently design, conduct and evaluate research projects, have outstanding theoretical and experimental research skills, is well-organized and result-driven with a strong team spirit.
- Furthermore, a strong command of (scientific) English in speech and writing is essential (EUR requirements minimum IELTS overall score of 7.0 [comparable to TOEFL PBT: 600; TOEFL CBT: 250; TOEFL IBT: 95]).
Before you apply please check our conditions for employment.
Terms of employment
- You will receive a temporary position for 4 years.
- The gross monthly salary is € 2.789,- in the 1st year and increases to € 3.536,- in the 4th year (scale OIO).
- A 4% payraise from November 1, 2023.
- Excellent fringe benefits, such as a 13th month that is already paid out in November and a individual travel expense package.
- Pension insurance with ABP. We take care of approximately 2/3 of the monthly contribution.
- Special benefits, such as a incompany physiotherapist and bicycle repairer. And there is also a gym where you can work on your fitness after work.
- An International Office which aids you in preparing for you arrival and stay.
For more information about this position, please contact Professor Jurgen Marteijn, MD: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are excited by the thought of this position and would like to apply, please do so by using the application form on our website.
No agencies please.
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