European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

Postdoctoral Fellow - Bernabeu group

European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

Barcelona, Spain


About the team/job


EMBL Barcelona is a new research unit focusing on Tissue Biology and Disease Modelling. We aim to go beyond the molecular and cellular scale, integrating gene circuits with a tissue-level quantitative understanding of tissues and organs, both healthy and diseased. 


The Bernabeu group recently joined EMBL Barcelona. The main goal of the lab is to understand blood-brain barrier (BBB) organization and function, in health and disease. To this end, we will build 3D in vitro vascular models that recapitulate BBB structure. We will use this model to study vascular dysfunction in cerebral malaria. We aim to identify the host and parasite factors that trigger brain vascular damage, and understand the molecular mechanisms of BBB disruption. Our interdisciplinary team has strong collaborations with malaria research sites in endemic countries. The final goal of the team is to validate results obtained in in vitro studies in blood and tissue samples from cerebral malaria patients.


Your role


The successful candidate will develop and build 3D-BBB models with tubular shape and predetermined network geometry. We aim to mimic vessel dimensions and flow dynamics of the brain vasculature. These models incorporate the different cell types that compose the BBB.  You will study how the cells self-organize to recapitulate barrier function, and how the BBB function responds to different physical and biological stimuli, including malaria parasites. Depending on your experience and interests, you will perform follow up analyses, including functional assays, advanced imaging, transcriptomics or metabolomics. You will receive ample support from lab members and collaborators regarding both experiments and data analyses. 


You have



  • PhD in bioengineering, microfluidics or physics

  • Basic experience with tissue engineering

  • Experience in primary cell culture or iPSC differentiation

  • Strong interest in cell biology, vascular biology or infectious diseases

You might also have



  • Experience in microscopy and imaging analysis

  • Experience in transcriptomics, statistics and systems biology

  • Knowledge in vascular and blood-brain barrier biology

  • Basic wet lab experience, including molecular biology, cell biology and biochemistry

Why join us


EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organization with a very collegial and family friendly working environment. EMBL is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women. Appointment will be based on merit alone. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme, medical, educational and other social benefits, as well as financial support for relocation and installation, including your family.


What else you need to know


We are Europe’s flagship research laboratory for the life sciences – an intergovernmental organisation performing scientific research in disciplines including molecular biology, physics, chemistry and computer science. We are an international, innovative and interdisciplinary laboratory with more than 1700 employees from many nations, operating across six sites, in Heidelberg (HQ), Barcelona, Hinxton near Cambridge, Hamburg, Grenoble and Rome.

Our other missions are to offer vital services in training scientists, students and visitors at all levels; to develop new instruments and methods in the life sciences and actively engage in technology transfer activities, and to integrate European life science research.

Please note that appointments on fixed term contracts can be renewed, depending on circumstances at the time of the review.

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: embl-BA00050

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