We are always interested in hearing from talented and motivated candidates that are interested in the group's work. While open positions are contigent on space and funding, we encourage you to get in touch at any time to see if it is possible to work together. Email <> with a short introduction, along with your CV and we can discuss! Looking forward to hearing from you.

Uncovering protein dynamics: developing statistical crystallography

Postdoctoral Scholarship

Cluster of Excellence: Advanced Imaging of Matter

Center for Free Electron Laser Science (CFEL), Hamburg, Germany

Protein motion is at the heart of life, but remains challenging to witness firsthand. Proteins move to reading and copying DNA, convert sunlight into chemical energy, and transmit signals between cells, yet our ability to image these functions is limited by the technology we have to image protein dynamics.

A new opportunity to meet this challenge is emerging, however, as crystallographic methods advance. We can now collect data from thousands to millions of crystals of the same protein, and it is clear no two crystals are identical. Thus, analyzing their distribution may reveal protein structural fluctuations directly. Can we develop a statistical crystallography to turn these large datasets into knowledge about protein dynamics? Can we use statistical analysis of crystal-to-crystal variation to separate signal from noise in time resolved experiments, revealing protein motion induced by mixing with a ligand or excitation with a pump laser? We seek a computational scientist who will answer these questions.

As the ideal candidate, you will have the following key attributes:

  • A doctoral degree in physics, biophysics, chemistry, applied mathematics or a related field
  • Working knowledge of macromolecular crystallographic methods and software
  • A track record of scientific computing and programming
  • The ability to drive your work independently and show initiative

And you will be excited to take on the following responsibilities:

  • Mathematical modeling of protein dynamics and protein crystal diffraction data
  • Interpretation and analysis of experimental results
  • Open-source development to make your insights available to the broader scientific community
  • Presenting your work in written and oral form to the scientific community
  • Helping to foster an environment conductive to collaboration, learning, growth, and fun

Available immediately is a two-year contract with a competitive salary and the opportunity to work and live in the beautiful and vibrant city of Hamburg, Germany. The group is housed at the Center for Free Electron Laser Science on the vibrant DESY campus (Luruper Chaussee 149, 22761 Hamburg, Germany).

This position is funded through the Advanced Imaging of Matter Cluster of Excellence ( The successful candidate will become a fellow of the cluster and have access to career support, training opportunities, and an engaging scientific network via the cluster. The candidate will have additional technical and mentorship support from partners Andrea Thorne, Arwen Pearson, and Nicholas Pearce and their groups during the course of the project.

We are an equal opportunity employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply and handicapped persons will be preferred given equal qualifications.

Application deadline: 17 June 2021
Applications should include a cover letter, a tabular curriculum vitae, and copies of degree certificate(s). Please send applications by email to: <>

For more details, write directly to TJ Lane: <>

Cross-Posting on the AIM Cluster of Excellence page (funding source for this project):