University Hospital of Cologne

PhD Student (f/m/x) - for the ZMMK

University Hospital of Cologne

Cologne, Germany

As a modern maximum-care hospital with a capacity of approximately 1,540 beds, the University Hospital of Cologne is dedicated to the practice of innovative academic medical excellence. At the Faculty of Medicine 1.800 scientists are engaged in research, ranging from basic sciences to clinical application, as well as teaching and health care. Together with the University Hospital Cologne the faculty maintains 58 clinics, research institutes and centres. 3.400 students study in this dynamic and innovative environment. The Faculty of Medicine and the University Hospital Cologne are embedded in the scientifically highly active Rhine region. They have strong contacts to and alliances with the surrounding universities and non-university research institutions guaranteeing scientific excellence in research and teaching.

The Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne (CMMC) is seeking applications for a part-time (25 hours/week) as

PhD Student (f/m/x)

to be employed under a limited-time third-party funding of 3 years according to the WissZeitVG.

The Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne (CMMC) is a multidisciplinary center at the University of Cologne providing a forum that brings together physician scientists with basic researchers from the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences to perform competitive basic, disease-oriented research. The mission of the CMMC is to advance the understanding of the underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms as a prelude to improving prevention, diagnosis and treatment of many common health problems. For further information, please visit ZMMK.

The CMMC invites applications from enthusiastic, motivated individuals for the Junior Research Group (JRG XII) “Cell Death, Inflammation and Immunity” of Dr. Alessandro Annibaldi.

We are interested in how cell death is regulated downstream of different innate immune receptors, such as TNFR1. Once activated by TNF, TNFR1 initiates a cascade of events that trigger the activation of NF-kB and MAPKs, leading to the expression of pro-survival and pro-inflammatory genes. However, under certain circumstances, TNFR1 activation can also induce cell death, that is mediated by the kinase activity of RIPK1, the proteolytic activity of Caspase-8 and/or the pseudokinase MLKL. The main focus of our work is to characterise novel mechanisms determining whether TNF stimulation induces the expression of pro-inflammatory genes or cell death and to understand the impact of these two different outcomes on tissue plasticity.

To this purpose, we will use a series of in vitro cell models, in vivo approaches and state-of-the-art biochemical techniques (e.g. mass spectrometry and ubiquitin pull-down).

Characterizing how the life and death decision is made downstream of TNFR1 will provide a better understanding of how the immune responses are regulated followed pathogen infection or tissue injury.

Please visit CMMC-Uni to learn more about the group’s interests and ongoing research.

Your responsibilities will include:

  • Generation and culture of primary mouse cell lines
  • Biochemical analysis of signalling pathways and protein interactions
  • Analysis of protein post-translational modifications (e.g. ubiquitination, phosphorylation)
  • Conduct collaborative efforts across disciplines (e.g. immunology)

Minimum qualifications:

  • M.Sc. or equivalent degree in biochemistry, biophysics or a related field, completed with above-average grades
  • Experience and publication record in biochemistry
  • Thorough conceptual understanding of signalling pathways
  • Enthusiasm for protein structure, modifications and function as the basis of life processes
  • High level of motivation, endurance and positivity
  • Ability and willingness to work in a collaborative team
  • Excellent communication in English (written and speech)

Desired qualifications:

  • Hands-on experience and publication record in cell death and/or immunology
  • Experience in immunostaining of human and mouse samples
  • Experience in bioinformatics

We offer:

  • A vibrant sceintific environment
  • Jobticket

Your salary will be based on TV-L.

Applications from female candidates are expressly welcome and will be given priority in the event of equal suitability, competence and professional performance.

People with disabilities are welcome to apply and will be treated preferentially in the event of equal suitability and qualification.

Please address a E-Mail to Dr. Alessandro Annibaldi (

Have we awakened your interest? Please submit your application (including a detailed CV, list of publications, two references and a brief statement of research interests) here online.

We prefer online applications, but you also have the opportunity to apply via regular mail quoting the reference number V000001379 to

Uniklinik Köln

Geschäftsbereich Personal


Ausschreibungsnummer V000001379

50924 Köln

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: V000001379