Postdoctoral position: “RNA-centric antibiotics”.

Kennziffer: 82/2018



The department “RNA-Biology of Bacterial Infection” of Prof. Jörg Vogel at the Helmholtz Institute for RNA-based Infection Research (HIRI) in Würzburg (Germany) is offering a Postdoctoral position: “RNA-centric antibiotics”. The Helmholtz Institute for RNA-based Infection Research (HIRI) was established in May 2017 as a joint venture between the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI) and the Julius-Maximilians-University of Würzburg (JMU). Located on the Würzburg medical campus, it will be the first research institution worldwide to exclusively address the role of ribonucleic acids (RNAs) in infection processes. Based on these findings, the HIRI will pioneer an integrative approach to exploit the vast potential of RNA as a diagnostic, drug, and therapeutic target for new strategies to combat infectious diseases. Project description: The Vogel group at the HIRI is recruiting a postdoctoral researcher to develop new types of RNA-centric antibiotics. The aim of this project is a precision manipulation of microbiota with "programmable antibiotics" as provided by RNA-directed antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs). The same approach can be taken to target antibiotic-resistant pathogen as an alternative to standard antibiotics. There is already proof-of-principle for this exciting concept, but many open questions remain. What does it take to make these ASOs truly species-specific; how can we minimize potential off-targeting; what are the most effective peptides for delivery; what about the hast response and bacterial resistance mechanisms? Since there is unlikely a one-fits-all solution for all microbiome species, this project can only succeed by integrating diverse expertise from RNA biology, microbiology, immunology, single-cell biology, and pharmacy. It is also highly interconnected with the basic questions asked in the other research areas in the Vogel lab.


  • PhD or equivalent in bioinformatics, microbiology, genomics, computer science, engineering, data science, or a related field
  • Previous experience with antibiotics research would be desirable
  • Ability to work independently and as part of an international team
  • A strong desire to do research
  • Enthusiasm, creativity, and strong self-motivation
  • Excellent English communication skills (written and spoken)

The HIRI expressly invites women to apply. Equally well-qualified disabled applicants will be given preference. Part time is possible upon request.


HIRI Würzburg



February 2019


Initial term 3 years


6 months


E 13/14 TVöD/Bund



Bewerbungsschluss ist der  09.01.2019

Applications should include a short cover letter, CV without a picture, publication list, copies of relevant documents and contact information for academic references as a single PDF file stating the job announcement 82/2018 via email to



For informal inquiries, please contact Prof. Jörg Vogel (

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