The University of Helsinki, founded in 1640, is one of the world’s leading universities for multidisciplinary research. The university has an international academic community of 40,000 students and staff members. The University of Helsinki offers comprehensive services to its employees, including occupational health care and health insurance, sports facilities, and opportunities for professional development.

The International Staff Services office assists employees from abroad with their transition to work and life in Finland.

The Department of Biosciences situated at the Viikki science park belongs to the Faculty of Biological and Environmental Sciences of University of Helsinki and is the largest research and teaching unit in biosciences in Finland. The Department of Biosciences is one of the largest departments of Helsinki University with its c. 25 million euro budget and over 400 staff members.

The Department of Biosciences invites applications for a FOUR-YEAR PHD STUDENT POSITION

in the research group of Adrian Goldman as part of the Academy of Finland funded Ret Tyrosine kinase receptor project. The successful applicant will join the Goldman group at the University of Helsinki.

The PhD project aims to understand the mechanism of action of two different signaling complexes: the canonical GDNF-GFRa-Ret signaling complex, as well as the recently-identified complex involving Ephrin. The goal is to develop the first full-length high-resolution model of any tyrosine receptor, connecting in detail external binding to internal signalling. Some of the work will be carried out on the new state-of-the-art microscopes at the University of Leeds, where Adrian Goldman has a second appointment.  The work will thus be intrinsically international.

In practice, you will express, purify and assay various complexes of Ret and its multiple ligands, using a variety of biochemical and cell biological techniques to determine function with Academy Professor Mart Saarma. You are expected to present your findings in scientific meetings and workshops, as well as prepare publications for international scientific journals.

Motivated students who have either completed or are close to completing an MSc degree in structural biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology or neurobiology are encouraged to apply. Prior expertise in working with membrane proteins and/or mammalian proteins and cells will be a major bonus, as is demonstrated numeracy but your most important assets are enthusiasm for research, motivation to learn new things, and ability to work independently while being an active member of a research team.

Please send your application to by September 20th 2015 (15.45 local Helsinki time) with the title PhD RET. Attach a CV (with possible publications included), a copy of your transcript records (printout of the courses you’ve completed), contact details of two references (e.g. MSc thesis supervisor), and a letter (MAX 1 page) with a description of your researcher interests and why you would be a suitable candidate for the project.

The salary will be based on level 2 of the demands level chart for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition, the appointee will be paid a salary component based on personal performance. The total salary will be €2290 -€2885 per month or €24,600- €36,000 per year.

The work is scheduled to start by November 2015. The employment contract includes a trial period of 4 months.

For more information, please contact Professor Adrian Goldman ( or visit the website at

For information on the University of Helsinki, please visit:

Apply at latest 20.09.2015

Apply for job