Postdoctoral Fellow in Statistical Genetics (f/m/d)

Helmholtz Zentrum München - German Research Center for Environmental Health (HMGU)

Neuherberg (bei München), Germany

Work group:

Helmholtz Pioneer Campus

Area of research:

Scientific / postdoctoral posts

Starting date:


Contract time limit:


Job description:

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.

The Helmholtz Pioneer Campus (HPC) is an innovation campus with a start-up culture, founded and funded by the Helmholtz Zentrum München. HPC stands for the smart fusion of biomedical sciences, engineering and digitization in a research environment that has no parallel in Europe.

The Translational Genetics group headed by Dr Na Cai at HPC is looking for a highly motivated

Postdoctoral Fellow in Statistical Genetics (f/m/d)

interested in studying the genetic architecture of mental health conditions, their molecular underpinnings, and gene-environmental interactions contributing to disease liability.

The Challenge

We focus on investigating the genetic architecture and genetic associations with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), a common, complex and heterogeneous disorder that present interesting challenges for genetic studies. This project investigates the genetic architecture of MDD, with a focus on identifying sources of heterogeneity, gene-environmental interactions, and shared genetic factors with other conditions. You will use large-scale population-based and MDD-specific datasets to assess context-specific genetic effects on MDD, and how they relate to specific symptoms combinations, clinical characteristics, and comorbidities with other conditions. You will be encouraged to propose and design your own hypothesis-driven investigations within the description of this project, and will be fully supported in developing novel statistical or computational approaches to solve these problems, and/or expanding the scope of analysis to related topics through collaborations with computational, clinical and experimental groups both locally and internationally.

Your Profile

We are looking for talented individuals willing to develop and execute the next breakthrough ideas. Ideal candidates will have:

PhD in Genetics, Statistics, Computer Science, Bioinformatics or related biological or quantitative disciplines Good publication record with evidence of independence (at least one first-author publication in an international journal)Strong computing skills including demonstrated competency in scientific programming in a statistical or compiled language Experience or knowledge of genome-wide association studies, especially in psychiatric conditions (preferred) Fluent in written and spoken English

If you are a practising clinician (psychiatrist) interested in development of quantitative research methods for genetic research and working on this project, please contact Dr Na Cai in advance to application for discussions of your interests and goals.

What we offer 

The Translational Genetics group headed by Dr Na Cai at the HPC forms part of an extensive network of researchers working on quantitative genetics, single cell genomics, and genetic epidemiology. 
We offer a dynamic working environment, advanced training in quantitative genetics and computational biology, and the opportunity to perform inter-disciplinary research with local groups with cutting edge expertise on imaging, single-cell technologies, and animal model systems. 

The position is initially limited to two years with the option of extension, with the expected start date of 1 March 2020. Remuneration and benefits are in accordance with the collective agreement for the public sector (TV EntgO Bund). The Helmholtz Zentrum München embraces diversity and is an equal opportunity employer and certified holder of the Total E-Quality Award. Applications from women and qualified individuals with physical disabilities are highly encouraged. We offer a family-friendly environment, flexible working hours, a child care facility on Campus and dual career opportunities. Munich is a city with a vibrant cultural and social life, consistently selected to be in the top 5 global cities to live in.

We look forward to receiving your online application (1-page motivation letter, 2-page description of your research experiences, interests and future plans, CV, and contact details of 2 referees) in a single pdf file. Incoming applications will be reviewed until the position is filled. Interviews will start at the end of January 2020.

Curious? If you have further questions, simply contact Dr. Na Cai on, who will be happy to be of assistance.

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: 2019/0449