PhD Student in Molecular Microbiology Technical University of Munich, Department of Fundamentals of Biosciences Germany

PhD Student in Molecular Microbiology


13.11.2017, Scientific staff

At the Chair of Microbial Ecology (Prof. Dr. Siegfried Scherer) in the Department of Fundamentals of Biosciences at the WZW, ZIEL Institute for Food & Health of the Technical University of Munich ( is from February / March 2018 a PhD position on the topic "Function and evolution of overlapping genes in bacteria".


Scientific background:

In some very surprising cases, the same DNA sequence encodes two different proteins because two mRNA molecules are formed and translated by different reading frames (overlapping genes = OLGs). Overlapping genes in bacteria have hardly been researched so far, and their formation is a puzzle whose solution requires intensive research. The OLG working group at the Department of Microbial Ecology of the TU Munich (Prof. Dr. Siegfried Scherer, deals with this problem with experimental and theoretical bioinformatic methods.


A clearly above average MSc. Degree in a life sciences discipline, preferably biology; Background in evolutionary biology and molecular genetics is desired; Knowledge in experimental microbiology as well as in bioinformatics are advantageous; Basic knowledge of programming languages is not a requirement and could possibly be taught.


The aim of this thesis is to study the function, taxonomic distribution and molecular evolution of prokaryotic overlapping genes. On the one hand, the phylogenies of different types of OLGs are detected on the basis of sequence / structural homology in order to test models for the genesis and evolution of such genes. On the other hand, selected OLGs are experimentally characterized by microbiological methods as well as NGS techniques (especially RIBOseq).

We offer:

The TU Munich is an excellent, internationally renowned research university and offers an interdisciplinary, innovative and well-equipped research environment . For doctoral candidates, numerous additional training courses are offered by the TUM Graduate School.

Remuneration is based on TV-L E13 / 2 (50%)

The PhD position is limited to three years


Please send your application by 10th December 2017 via email to Dr. med. Zachary Ardern ( Severely handicapped applicants will preferably be hired if they have otherwise the same qualifications. The Technical University of Munich is aiming for an increase in the proportion of women, and applications from women are therefore expressly welcomed.


Technische Universität München

Department of Microbial Ecology

Weihenstephaner Berg 3

D-85354 Freising Tel. +49 8161 71 3516


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