University of Cambridge

Job Opportunities


Research Associate (Fixed Term)

Applications are invited for a Post-doctoral Research Associate position in the group of Professor Henrik Jönsson at the Sainsbury Laboratory Cambridge University, to carry out fundamental research in the field of Computational Morphodynamics in plants. The project will focus on experimental work for investigating the role of mechanical signals in nuclear deformation and chromatin changes at the shoot apical meristem sensing mechanical anisotropy and actors of cellulose synthesis in plant cell walls and the relation to plant development. The focus will be on the plant shoot, but the work may also be extended to other plant tissues. The project will be developed in close connection with theoretical model development, and the successful applicant will have the opportunity to develop skills in computational modelling and image analysis of plant wall mechanics.

Applicants must have a PhD in experimental cell biology, plant developmental biology or related field. Proficiency in experimental work on plant cell walls tissues and using confocal microscopy is essential. Documented work on Arabidopsis is beneficial. Candidates must have advanced knowledge in plant molecular biology and experimental experience working on chromatin, gene expression and epigenetics cellulose synthase complexes, cortical microtubular dynamics, and exocytosis and recycling processes. Experience in systems biology and/or theoretical biophysics would also be advantageous.

The successful candidate will be fully involved in the basic research in these areas whilst also writing up their research work for presentation and publication. The post holder may be required to assist in the supervision of student projects, provide instructions to students and deliver seminars relating to their research area.

Good communication skills are essential, as the post holder will need to work well in a team and collaborate with other researchers in the Institute. Candidates should also demonstrate a history of science communication (e.g. presentations, outreach activities, teaching) and have a proven track record of scientific publication.

The Laboratory provides a welcoming and collaborative environment with a wide range of family-friendly benefits and development opportunities. More about the Sainsbury Laboratory and details of what the University offers to employees can be found at

The post is available from September 2018.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available until 31 December 2018 in the first instance.

To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply' button below. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Please ensure that you upload a copy of your full CV, a covering letter highlighting your suitability for the position and contact information of three referees.

Please quote reference PT15614 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The Sainsbury Laboratory receives a high volume of applications. If you have not heard from us within three weeks of the closing date, please consider your application as unsuccessful on this occasion.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Further information

Apply online