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Job opening


Translational Oncology


PhD Student - Molecular and Cellular Oncology



Ihre Aufgaben:

The research group "Molecular and Cellular Oncology" (Head: Prof. Stefan Fröhling) at the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg and the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), is seeking an exceptionally talented and highly motivated PhD student to elucidate the molecular mechanism of tumor aggressiveness and metastasis caused by mutations in the deubiquitinase and tumor suppressor gene BAP1.

One third of renal cell carcinoma patients present with metastatic disease at diagnosis, and another 30% will develop metastases after surgery. When metastatic, renal cell carcinoma remains largely incurable. We previously showed that tumors with BAP1 mutations are characterized by high aggressiveness and poor patient survival. However, the molecular mechanism through which BAP1 loss induces metastasis and tumor aggressiveness remains elusive.

The successful PhD candidate will investigate the key mechanism of how BAP1 represses the expression of a microRNA (miRNA) cluster involved in tumor metastasis by characterizing its interaction with the promoter and identifying its binding proteins and substrates. The PhD student will be supervised by Dr. Samuel Peña-Llopis, an expert in this field.

Techniques to employ include:
Standard molecular biology and bioinformatics methods, DANN transfection, protein expression in cell lines, mRNA and miRNA expression analysis, Western blot analysis, dual-luciferase reporter assays, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP), DANN pull-down assays, site-directed mutagenesis, ubiquitination assays, deubiquitination assays, assays for proliferation, invasion, migration, anchorage independence and in vivo mouse models of metastasis.

Ihr Profil:

• Applicants must hold a Master’s degree in biology, biochemistry, biotechnology, or a related field
• The successful candidate is a highly motivated, ambitious, and hard-working individual with excellent grades who enjoys working in an international team and is passionate about making a difference through cancer research
• Strong communication and team working skills are required
• An excellent written and oral command of English is essential
• The ideal candidate has expertise in biochemistry, cell or molecular biology, with specific focus on the techniques described above
• It is an advantage, but not essential, having basic knowledge of bioinformatics tools, such as R and Phyton

Applications should include a cover letter, CV, copy of certificates, expected availability date, a complete list of publications, and 2 references.

Wir bieten:

  • Interessanten, vielseitigen Arbeitsplatz
  • Internationales Umfeld
  • Vergütung nach TV-L
  • Möglichkeiten zur Teilzeitarbeit
  • Flexible Arbeitszeiten
  • Gute Fort- und Weiterbildung


as soon as possible


The position is limited to 3 years.


November 30, 2017

Weitere Informationen:

Dr. Samuel Peña-Llopis
phone +49 6221 42-1649

The German Cancer Research Center is committed to increase the percentage of female scientists and encourages female applicants to apply. Among candidates of equal aptitude and qualifications, a person with disabilities will be given preference.

To apply for a position please use our online application portal (

We ask for your understanding that we cannot return application documents that are sent to us by post (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, Personalabteilung, Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, 69120 Heidelberg) and that we do not accept applications submitted via email. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

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