Umeå University, Medicinska fakulteten

Umeå University is one of Sweden’s largest institutions of higher education with over 35,000 students and 4,200 faculty and staff. We are characterised by world-leading research in several scientific fields and a multitude of educations ranked highly in international comparison. Umeå University is also the site of the pioneering discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic scissors - a revolution in genetic engineering that has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

At Umeå University, everything is nearby. Our cohesive campus environment makes it easy to meet, collaborate and exchange knowledge, which promotes a dynamic and open culture where we rejoice in each other's successes.

The Faculty of Medicine, which consists of 13 departments, is responsible for biomedical research and courses in the field of nursing and health care and has an extensive research and graduate education in more than 80 subjects.

The Department of Molecular Biology seeks a postdoctoral scientist to the project “high-resolution functional mapping of armadillo repeat proteins in malaria parasite protein trafficking”. The position is funded by Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden (MIMS). The position is full-time for two years with access as soon as possible or by agreement.

Department of Molecular Biology

The Department of Molecular Biology has about 200 employees. The department's main tasks involve research, graduate education, and undergraduate education as well as interactions with the community. Affiliated with both the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Faculty of Medicine, the department's research and education activity includes several molecular biological areas within science and medicine: cell biology, microbiology, infection biology, tumour biology and neurobiology in conjunction with the use of genetic model organisms (except plants). For more information, see:

Project description and working tasks

In order for the malaria parasite to establish infection in red blood cells the parasite has to export 10% of the proteins it produces. In addition, the parasite must import the building blocks it needs for growth. This active import and export constitutes a chink in the armor of the parasite, that can be exploited for drug uptake and constitutes new potential drug targets. Armadillo repeats (ARM) mediate protein-protein interactions and ARM-proteins are involved in protein trafficking in other organisms. Canonical secretion pathways are thought to be at play in malaria parasites, however, little is known about the molecular mechanisms of protein trafficking within the parasite and the proteins that underpin these processes.  

This project aims to map out the role of ARM proteins in protein trafficking in the rodent malaria model parasite Plasmodium berghei. The successful candidate will use reverse genetics to knock-out and epitope-tag P. berghei ARM proteins, followed by advanced microscopy techniques together with proteomics in order to understand ARM protein function by studying their KO phenotype, their localisation and interaction partners.

You will carry out experimental and bioinformatic work, design experiments, present your findings, write manuscripts, help supervising students and actively contribute to a collegial lab culture.

You will be based in the lab of Ellen Bushell at the Department of Molecular Biology, Umeå University. The Bushell lab is based at Department of Molecular Biology and is a part of The Laboratory of Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden (MIMS,, which is the Swedish node within the Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine.


Required qualifications:

A person who has been awarded a doctorate (PhD) or a foreign qualification deemed to be the equivalent of a doctorate qualifies as a postdoctoral fellow. Priority should be given to candidates who have completed their doctoral degree no more than three years before the closing date of the application. A candidate who has completed their degree prior to this may be considered if special circumstances exist. Special circumstances include absence due to illness, parental leave or clinical practice, appointments of trust in trade unions or similar circumstances.

You should be highly motivated and able to work productively in a team as well as independently. Excellent communication skills for interacting effectively with senior colleagues and peers are required. Proficiency in written and spoken English also required. Great emphasis will be placed on personal suitability.

The successful candidate should have experience in molecular cloning methods such as GIBSON assembly and CRISPR/Cas9 vector design. You should also have experience in light and / or electron microscopy, or protein expression, localisation and interaction work.

Other Desirable qualifications:

Experience in cultivation and transfection of malaria parasites is highly desirable, and so is in vivo experiments using rodents. Bioinformatics and programming knowledge is not required as training is available, but is a desirable merit.


You apply through our recruitment system Varbi. The application should be written in English (preferably) or Swedish. The deadline for application is 10 August 2021. The application should include:

  • A personal cover letter explaining why you are interested in the position, how you can contribute to the project and in which direction you may want to develop it (no more than one A4 page).
  • A curriculum vitae that documents academic education and past and previous employments.
  • Your publication list.
  • A copy of the PhD certificate and other relevant degree certificates.
  • A copy of doctoral thesis
  • Names and contact details with e-mail addresses of two or three academic references.
  • Other relevant documentation you wish to include in support of your application.

We welcome your application!

Further information

For more information, please contact Dr Ellen Bushell ( We look forward to receiving your application!

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
First day of employment As soon as possible or by agreement
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-492-21
  • Ellen Bushell,
Union representative
  • SACO, 090-786 53 65
  • SEKO, 090-786 52 96
  • ST, 090-786 54 31
Published 30.Mar.2021
Last application date 10.Aug.2021 11:59 PM CEST

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