Harro Bouwmeester

Bioinformatics research assistant

Website University of Amsterdam, Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences

The mission of the Plant Hormone Biology group is to understand the chemical communication of plants with other organisms, such as parasitic plants, nematodes and microbes. We study how plants produce and secrete signalling molecules, particularly underground, and how this affects the behaviour of these other organisms in the soil. For example, the chemical communication of potato with nematodes, a project funded by the Dutch Organisation for Scientific Research Applied & Engineering Sciences domain (NWO-TTW). Another example in the Gravitation program, MICROP, we investigate the chemical signaling mechanisms underlying the stress-induced changes in plant root microbiome recruitment. To be able to unravel the underlying mechanisms of this chemical communication, we use a series of different –omics approaches. You will support the Plant Hormone Biology group with the development and/or implementation of bioinformatics tools such as co-expression analysis, ortholog identification, RNAseq/ metabolomics/metabarcoding dataset analysis and their integration. You will use these tools to support the group with data analysis aimed at the identification and analysis of genes involved in plant metabolism, more specifically the production of rhizosphere signaling molecules. These genes will subsequently be further characterized by the group through cloning and heterologous expression, mutants and/or transgenic approaches. You will support the group with maintenance of the server and organization of data storage.

What are you going to do?

  • you will develop and/or implement bioinformatics tools such as co-expression analysis, ortholog identification, RNAseq/metagenomics/metabolomics dataset analysis and their integration;
  • you will carry out analyses of public and group-generated RNAseq, metagenomics and/or metabolomics datasets in order to pinpoint candidate genes involved in plant metabolism;
  • you will collaborate with group members for the characterisation of candidate genes using bioinformatics approaches;
    you will maintain the group server and will coordinate the group’s data storage.

What do we require?

  • a BSc (Higher education) or MSc degree (or equivalent experience) in bioinformatics or computational biology;
    affinity for plant biology;
  • ample experience with programming languages (e.g. Python/R/Matlab);
  • experience with different operating systems (Unix/MacOS/Windows etc.);
  • experience with smaller cluster computers and affinity with large cluster computing solutions like Amazon, Azure;
  • good communication skills;
  • fluency in English.

Our offer
A temporary contract for 30,4 hours per week, preferably starting at 1 September 2020 for the duration of 3 years. The initial contract will be for a period of one year. If we assess your performance positive the temporary contract will be extended with 2 years to a total duration of 3 years. The salary, depending on relevant work experience before the beginning of the employment contract, will be €2,579 to €3,445 gross per month, based on a full-time employment (38 hours a week). These amounts are exclusive 8 % holiday allowance and 8,3% end-of-year bonus. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

Are you curious about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits like our excellent opportunities for study and development? Then find out more about working at the Faculty of Science.

About the Faculty of Science and SILS
The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 6,500, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain. The Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS) is one of the Faculty of Science’s largest institutes. Its approximately 240 scientists and staff members work in 16 research groups that perform excellent research centered on four themes: Cell & Systems Biology, Neurosciences, Microbiology and Green Life Sciences. Within the Theme Green Life Sciences, five research groups have dedicated their research to plants: Plant Physiology, Molecular Plant Pathology, Developmental Genetics, Plant Cell Biology and Plant Hormone Biology. The Plant Hormone Biology group investigates the role of plant hormones and other signaling molecules in the communication of plants with other organisms. The group consists of an international team of post-docs, Phds and technicians – with expertise ranging from analytical chemistry to biochemistry and molecular biology – who are working on a number of inter-related topics.

Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

Prof. Harro Bouwmeester, Chair of the Plant Hormone Biology group
T: +31 (0)6 20387674
Dr Lemeng Dong, project leader of the NWO-TTW project
T: +31 (0)6 16431799

Job application
The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity. Due to Dutch legislation, the UvA is for non-scientific positions obliged to recruit within the EU. If you are not a EU-citizen (including Norway and Switzerland) please do not apply for this vacancy. Your application must include a CV (including contact details of (academic) referees) and a letter of motivation. Please mention the months (not just years) in your CV when referring to your education and work experience.

To apply for this job email your details to h.j.bouwmeester@uva.nl