Postdoctoral fellow in molecular obesity research (f/m/d) in Leipzig

Helmholtz Zentrum München Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt (GmbH)
Leipzig, Sachsen (DE)
July 15 2019
Organization Type

As German Research Center for Environmental Health, Helmholtz Zentrum München pursues the goal of developing personalized medical approaches for the prevention and therapy of major common diseases such as diabetes mellitus, allergies and lung diseases. To achieve this, it investigates the interaction of genetics, environmental factors and lifestyle.

At our institute you will find a scientifically stimulating international environment. Together with renowned scientists and supported by an excellent infrastructure you make an important contribution to the improvement of people’s quality of life.

The newly founded Helmholtz Institute for Metabolic, Obesity and Vascular Research (Helmholtz-Institut für Metabolismus-, Adipositas- und Gefäßforschung, HI-MAG) at the University of Leipzig, aims at uncovering the molecular underpinnings of adipose tissue dysfunction to enable precision therapies for obesity and its co-morbidities, like metabolic and vascular disturbances, using a clinical translational approach. The institute is part of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center and closely linked to the metabolic research activities of the Faculty of Medicine Leipzig.

As part of HI-MAG Leipzig, the Molecular Obesity Group is now recruiting a highly qualified and motivated

Postdoctoral fellow in molecular obesity research (f/m/d) in Leipzig
2019/0297 Job Description


Our group “Molecular Obesity Research” pursues several approaches to investigate protein (e.g. serpin or protease) function in adipose tissue and obesity. We use our expertise in protein expression and purification to generate substantial amounts of these proteins and elucidate the structural characteristics and molecular mechanisms underlying their biologic activity. In parallel, we are dedicated to unravel their physiological function in health and disease using isolated cells, tissues and animal models.


The ideal candidate will be capable of coordinating a multifaceted research program and of working both independently and collaboratively in a team. The successful applicant will explore the mechanisms by which e.g. serpins and proteases regulate or contribute to adipose tissue inflammation but also whole body energy expenditure and glucose metabolism and how these processes are perturbed or altered in obesity. The project will include the generation and characterization of novel mouse models.

An ideal applicant must have solid experience with contemporary techniques in the study of obesity, with emphasis on the isolation and molecular and biochemical analysis of brown and white adipose tissue and the isolation and culture of adipose tissue macrophages and primary adipocytes. Experience in various application routes in mice, glucose and insulin tolerance testing is essential. Additionally, the candidate should have expertise in breeding and genotyping of mice, real-time PCR and Western blotting, ELISA, histology, etc. Additional highly desired skills include expertise in CNS-dependent regulation of metabolism and intracerebral injection for central drug application.

Your Qualifications

  • PhD in life sciences or related disciplines, background in cell biology and molecular biology and strong interest in medical/biological questions
  • Strong motivation, scientific curiosity and commitment to scientific excellence
  • Strong publication record with evidence of independence (at least one first-author publication in an international journal), experience with writing of grant applications and presenting data at conferences
  • Experience in mammalian cell culture
  • In-depth knowledge of mouse biology, handling and drug-administration routes, experience with genetically engineered mouse models and analysis of molecular pathways in obesity, inflammation and diabetes
  • Knowledge and high interest in cellular signaling cascades and regulatory mechanisms, metabolism, (obesity-related) inflammation and insulin resistance
  • Experience in CNS-dependent regulation of metabolism and intracerebral injection for central drug application
  • Interest in discussing and exploring potential project ideas with collaboration partners
  • Team player skills and enthusiasm to work in a multi-disciplinary, collaborative environment
  • Excellent command of the English language

What we offer you

A challenging and versatile field of work providing you with the freedom to follow your instinct and be creative. With the help of extensive and goal-orientated professional development measures and career-building program we encourage you to grow as a person.

Remuneration and social benefits are based on the collective wage agreement for public-sector employees at federal level (TV EntgO Bund).

The position is (initially) limited to two years but under certain circumstances an extension can be arranged. The place of work will be in Leipzig.

The activity involves special knowledge and experience specific to own scientific skills.

As a holder of the Total E-Quality Award, we promote equality of opportunity. To increase the share of women in management roles we very much welcome the respective applications. Qualified applicants with physical disabilities will be given preference.

If you have further questions, simply contact Dr. John Heiker (

We are looking forward to receiving your online application (motivation letter, CV, contact details of at least two referees and a brief description of research interests and future plans) in a single PDF file until August 19, 2019.

Helmholtz Zentrum München
Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt (GmbH)
Dr. John Heiker
Helmholtz-Institut für Metabolismus-, Adipositas- und Gefäßforschung
Philipp-Rosenthal-Str. 27
04103 Leipzig

The Helmholtz Zentrum München is part of the Helmholtz Association, Germany‘s largest scientific organization. Altogether 40,000 people currently work in its 19 scientific-technical and biological-medical research centers. The Association‘s annual budget amounts to more than 4.7 billion Euros.