Postdoctoral fellow in protein biochemistry (artificial spider silk)

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Application deadline

September 15, 2023

Postdoctoral fellow in protein biochemistry (artificial spider silk)


Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry

The Department of Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry is part of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science at SLU. The department has a major educational responsibility for the veterinary and animal nursing programs but also other bachelor’s and master’s programs. The teaching and research areas ranges from molecular and cellular mechanisms to the structure and function of entire animals. At the biochemistry section, our research mainly focuses on protein biochemistry in relation to cancer, nucleotide metabolism and biomaterials (spider silk). The biochemical laboratory is equipped with instruments for the production, purification and characterization of recombinant proteins. Furthermore, there is a cell culture laboratory and equipment for mechanical characterization of materials.

The research group in protein biochemistry consists of a professor, two doctoral students, a researcher and one postdoc working at SLU, as well as a postdoc, two technicians and a researcher working at Karolinska Institutet. The research group is innovative and has published several articles in highly ranked journals and has received several prestigious grants. We work with spider silk biology, protein biochemistry, artificial spider silk production and tissue engineering, see our website:

We are looking for a postdoc for a project that aims to increase the understanding of how the protein composition of the spider thread relates to its mechanical properties with the ultimate aim to make superstrong artificial silk fibers. The work mainly consists of cloning, expressing protein in E.coli, then purifying and characterizing these. Threads will then be spun from different recombinant protein mixtures and their mechanical properties determined. You will work closely with another postdoc within the same project (employed at KTH, Stockholm), who is working on establishing a machine learning platform to be able to design protein compositions for fibers with predetermined mechanical properties and vice versa. Previous extensive practical and theoretical experience in protein biochemistry and recombinant protein production and purification is a requirement, as is previous publications in peer reviewed international journals.

This position is part of a joint collaboration between the two of the largest research programs in Sweden, the Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program (WASP) and the SciLifeLab and Wallenberg National Program for Data-Driven Life Science (DDLS), with the ultimate goal of solving ground-breaking research questions across disciplines.

Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program (WASP) is Sweden’s largest individual research program ever, a major national initiative for strategically motivated basic research, education and faculty recruitment. The program addresses research on artificial intelligence and autonomous systems acting in collaboration with humans, adapting to their environment through sensors, information and knowledge, and forming intelligent systems-of-systems. The vision of WASP is excellent research and competence in artificial intelligence, autonomous systems and software for the benefit of Swedish industry. Read more:

The SciLifeLab and Wallenberg National Program for Data Driven Life Science (DDLS) is a 12-year initiative that focuses on data driven research, within fields essential for improving people’s lives, detecting and treating diseases, protecting biodiversity and creating sustainability. The program will train the next generation of life scientists and create strong computational and data science base. The program aims to strengthen national collaborations between universities, bridge the research communities of life sciences and data sciences, and create partnerships with industry, healthcare and other national and international actors. Read more:


Doctoral degree in molecular biology, biochemistry, biotechnology or similar.

Fluent English in speech and writing is a requirement.

Great emphasis will be placed on personal qualities such as a positive attitude and a genuine interest in research.

As postdoctoral appointments are career-developing positions for junior researchers, we are primarily looking for candidates with a doctoral degree that is three years old at most.

Place of work:

Ultuna, Uppsala

Form of employment:

Temporary employment 24 months, with the possibility of extension.



Starting date:

According to agreement.


Applicants must attach three documents:

1) CV including contact information, publication list and contact information for at least two references that know the applicant and his or her qualifications.

2) Description of previous and ongoing research and a justification for the applicant’s relevance to obtain the position. Description of preliminary research ideas are welcome but not required. (Maximum two A4 pages.)

3) Copy of diploma or link to or copy of doctoral dissertation.

We welcome your application no later than 2023-09-15

Contact person

Anna Rising



Last updated: 2023-09-04

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