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PhD Position available

News from Jun 16, 2022

A full time PhD student position is available in the Freund group at FU Berlin for 4 years in the project “The role of the palmitoylation switch in activated T cells”. Lipid-modification of proteins by palmitate is catalyzed by cellular palmitoyl transferases. These so-called DHHC enzymes steer the transport, membrane compartmentation and function of hundreds of proteins and are involved in the immune cell function of T cells. Furthermore, many potentially zoonotic viruses require palmitoylation by DHHC enzymes for infectivity. We have previously profiled the T cell palmitome and unraveled the role of individual palmitoylation events for T cell function.

Currently we are investigating the DHHC/target interplay in the context of T cell signaling and viral interference, with the goal to mechanistically understand and functionally inhibit critical palmitoylation events. Structural biology methods are readily available to the group and comprise NMR, X-Ray, EM and MS. A highly collaborative working environment allows to adapt the requirement for individual methods to the needs of the project.

Candidates are expected to hold a graduate degree (Master) in biochemistry, biology or related areas and to have a good understanding and an experimental background in protein biochemistry and/or structural biology. Previous experience in the field of expression of recombinant proteins using bacterial, insect cell and/or mammalian cell expression systems is advantageous. Since the project is part of a large and active transregional consortium, the successful candidate will be part of a research endeavor that has the overarching goal to unravel the molecular switches that govern cellular behavior. Annual PhD retreats between Heidelberg and Berlin students of the consortium guarantee the candidate to be part of a scientific community that addresses seminal aspects of modern biology.

The position is remunerated according to a full TVL-FU E13.

Applications should comprise study records, the name of two reviewers for letters of recommendation, a motivation letter, and a CV, stating the reference Freund_TRR186 and are to be sent to:

chfreund@zedat.fu-berlin.de and steffen.daehn2@fu-berlin.de

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