Lund University, Faculty of Science, Department of Chemistry

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top universities. The University has around 47 000 students and more than 8 800 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset.

Subject description
Project title: Bacterial interactions of antimicrobial peptides characterized using advanced fluorescence microscopy – relation between peptide binding and bacterial destabilization.

Background/scope: The purpose of the project is to employ advanced fluorescence microscopy for the investigation of interactions of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) with bacteria. In doing so, the project aims to clarify the interplay between bacterial membrane composition and AMP binding, as well as consequences of such binding for compositional and structural changes in bacterial membranes, eventually leading to bacterial lysis. As such, the project is expected to provide a novel perspective to the mode-of-action of AMPs, bringing together previous progress in the action of AMPs in model lipid membranes, on one hand, and biological results on antimicrobial effects, on the other. The project will be conducted at the Division of Physical Chemistry, Lund University, under the supervision of Prof. Martin Malmsten and Assoc. Prof. Peter Jönsson in collaboration with researchers in the groups of Malmsten and Jönsson at both Copenhagen University and Lund University. 

Work duties
The main task of the project is to characterize the interaction of AMPs with bacteria (particularly Escherichia coli) using a set of advanced fluorescence microscopy techniques. This includes in particular:

  • Using single-molecule and super-resolution microscopy to study where on the bacterial cell the AMPs bind.
  • Study of fluorescently labelled AMPs regarding bacteria binding/uptake investigating location, kinetics, and cooperativity.
  • Correlating the above to the distribution of anionic phospholipids (particularly cardiolipin) within the bacterial membrane.
  • Diffusion of lipids or of bound peptides within bacterial membranes, measured with fluorescence recovery after photobleaching or single molecule tracking, and its dependence on bound AMP.
  • Monitoring effects of AMP binding on aggregation and re-distribution of bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) by anti-LPS antibodies.
  • Consequences of these processes on bacterial membrane damage monitored by transport of membrane-impermeable dyes into/out of the bacteria. 

Qualification requirements
Applicants must have:

  • A PhD or equivalent research qualification within the subject of the position.
  • Very good oral and written proficiency in English.

Assessment criteria and other qualifications
Previous experience of the fluorescence microscopy techniques mentioned above is a merit. Previous experience of working with AMPs is a merit. Previous experience of working with bacteria is a merit. Documented ability of conducting efficient and high-qualitative research, independent as well as in a group, is a merit.

Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive and independence, and how the applicant’s experience and skills complement and strengthen ongoing research within the department, and how they stand to contribute to its future development.

Terms of employment
1-year employment.
Preferred start date: As soon as possible.
The scope of the employment: Full time.

Instructions on how to apply
Applications shall be written in English and be compiled into a PDF-file containing:

  • résumé/CV, including a list of publications,
  • a general description of past research and future research interests (no more than three pages),
  • contact information of at least two references,
  • copy of the doctoral degree certificate, and other certificates/grades that you wish to be considered.
Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
First day of employment As soon as possible
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2021/2114
  • Peter Jönsson, professor,
  • Martin Malmsten,
Union representative
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-222 93 62
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet, 046-222 93 64
  • SEKO: Seko Civil, 046-222 93 66
Published 24.Jun.2021
Last application date 18.Jul.2021 11:59 PM CEST

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