Postdoctoral Researcher – Multiscale Experimental Biomechanics of Bone Fragility in Type-2 Diabetes
Biomechanics Research Centre (BioMec)

Postdoctoral Researcher – Multiscale Experimental Biomechanics of Bone Fragility in Type-2 Diabetes Biomechanics Research Centre (BioMec)

NUI Galway

Galway, Ireland

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full-time Postdoctoral Researcher position Multiscale Modelling of Bone Biomechanics in Type-2 Diabetes at the Biomechanics Research Centre (BioMec), College of Engineering and Informatics, National University of Ireland, Galway. This position is funded through a European Research Council Starter Grant, MULT2D (Multiscale Mechanics of Bone Fragility in Type 2 Diabetes) under the supervision of Dr. Ted Vaughan (Google Scholar) and is available from 1st April 2019 to the 31st March 2021.


Project Background: The onset of Type-2 Diabetes is associated with increased bone fracture risk, despite the fact that bone volume is not reduced. This implies that T2 Diabetes impairs bone quality, whereby the intrinsic properties of the bone matrix itself are altered. It is widely believed that non-enzymatic glycation of proteins in the organic matrix underlie the pathogenesis of diabetic skeletal fragility. However, due to the complex nature of bone fracture events, there is a distinct lack of understanding of how altered protein mechanics impair functional properties in T2 diabetic bone disease. This project will develop a novel multiscale mechanics framework using state-of-the-art computational techniques to elucidate the physical mechanisms responsible for bone fragility.

This research will be conducted using the computational resources, equipment, technical expertise, office and research space within the College of Engineering and Informatics at NUI Galway. The new 14,000m2 Engineering building houses state-of-the-art Biomedical Engineering facilities, biomechanical testing laboratories, micro-CT scanning, microscopy, research space and computer suites.

Job Description: This project will evaluate the multiscale mechanics of bone fragility in Type-2 diabetes. A series of novel testing strategies will be used at organ-, tissue- and nano-scales to characterise fracture behaviour of human Type-2 diabetic bone tissue. Biomechanical evaluation will be carried out in parallel with detailed material characterization of the tissue, using techniques such as micro-CT, SEM, Biochemical Analysis and Raman spectroscopy to provide a better understanding of the relationship between physiochemical properties of the tissue and overall fracture behavior. In collaboration with the wider research team, advanced computational models of fracture process will be developed and features describing bone quality and quantity will be varied to predict fracture probability based on both bone quantity and quality. The project will facilitate a better understanding of bone fragility in Type-2 diabetes, while also providing a significant advance in the current state-of-the-art in bone mechanics.

Candidates interested should have a degree in Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, or closely-related discipline. Prospective candidates should be highly-motivated to participate in biomechanics research in a multidisciplinary team, with a certain level of engagement with Clinicians/Orthopaedic surgeons also expected.




The successful candidate will:

  • ·         Carry out detailed experimental biomechanical characterization of human bone tissue at macro, meso and micro-scales
  • ·         Carry out detailed material-level characterization of human bone tissue using techniques such as micro-CT, SEM and Raman spectroscopy.
  • ·         Publish data in high impact factor journals and/or protect new intellectual property.
  • ·         Provide mentorship to PhD students within the research group.
  • ·         Be responsible for project-related management and preparation of project reports.
  • ·         Actively participate in national/international conferences and meetings

Qualifications/Skills required.

Essential Requirements:

  • Applicants must have a primary degree and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, or closely-related discipline.  or a related discipline(s).
  • Applicants must have first author publications in leading journals in the field of experimental biomechanics.
  • Applicants must have experience of a wide-range of material/tissue characterization and analysis techniques (e.g. SEM, micro-CT, biochemical analysis, Raman spectroscopy.).

  • Applicants should have excellent communication and organizational skills and should be highly motivated and passionate about development of advanced computational engineering solutions.

Desirable Requirements:

  • Experience in experimental biomechanics and/or material characterisation o bone tissue.
  • Experience in engineering programming languages (e.g. Fortran, C, Matlab, Python).
  • Experience in the finite element modelling and software (e.g. Abaqus, ANSYS).  

Salary: €39,530 - €43,030 per annum


Start date: Position is available from April 2019


Continuing Professional Development/Training: Researchers at NUI Galway are encouraged to avail of a range of training and development opportunities designed to support their personal career development plans.  


Further information on research and working at NUI Galway is available on Research at NUI Galway


For information on moving to Ireland please see


Informal enquiries concerning the post may be made to Dr. Ted Vaughan at    


To Apply: Applications to include a covering letter, CV, and the contact details of three referees should be sent, via e-mail (PDF attachments only) to Dr. Ted Vaughan at    


Please put reference number NUIG-046-19 in subject line of e-mail application.



Closing date for receipt of applications is 5.00 pm (Irish Time), on 1st April 2019


All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment. National University of Ireland, Galway is an equal opportunities employer.

Apply with CV and Cover Letter

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Postdoctoral Researcher – Multiscale Experimental Biomechanics of Bone Fragility in Type-2 Diabetes Biomechanics Research Centre (BioMec)