We are now inviting applications for a Postdoctoral Researcher (reproductive physiology, evolutionary biology and biomedicine) position, Department of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Joensuu and/or Kuopio Campus.
We are seeking a motivated Postdoctoral Researcher for our project “Molecular and immunological basis of gamete compatibility in humans” (funded by the Academy of Finland.
According to the current definition of the World Health Organization, the causes of human infertility are partitioned into male- or female-dependent pathological factors. However, in a significant proportion of cases, the exact reason for infertility remains unexplained. Thus, reliable assessment of human infertility is currently extremely challenging. The primary aim of the project is to investigate the emerging possibility that reproductive failure can also be a result of sexual selection at the level of the gametes (‘cryptic female choice’). Accordingly, infertility does not necessarily represent a pathological condition, but can also be a consequence of natural compatibility verification processes of the gametes. Our project investigates the molecular and immunological mechanisms of these processes that occur in the reproductive tract of the female prior to fertilization. By clarifying these poorly known mechanisms, the project aims to increase our understanding of the mechanistic basis of fertilization and infertility, and pave the way for increasingly accurate infertility diagnostics that are better tailored to individual couples.
The Postdoctoral Researcher will participate in experimental research that aims to clarify these mechanisms in humans. Depending on the expertise of the researcher, the duties can include either: 1) molecular and/or immunological analyses (e.g. next-generation sequencing, Human Leucocyte Antigen analyses, protein mass spectrometry and cytokine analyses), 2) sperm motility and chemotaxis measurements, or 3) determination of female- and environmental exposure-induced physiological changes in sperm. The researcher’s tasks also include data analysis and reporting of the results in scientific journals.
The applicant is expected to have good skills in written and spoken English. Earlier experience in laboratory work, relevant methods in cell biology (e.g. sperm motility or viability analyses, ELISA assays or flow cytometry), immunology or molecular biology (e.g. next-generation sequencing or proteomics) will be considered a benefit for the applicant. If you have any of these skills, please indicate them in the accompanying CV and/or motivation letter (see below).
The person to be appointed as Postdoctoral Researcher is expected to hold a doctoral degree from an applicable field. If the employee has been awarded his or her doctoral degree less than five years ago, the post will be one of a Postdoctoral Researcher. If the doctoral degree has been awarded more than five years ago, the post will be one of a Project Researcher. In this context, the five years refer to a net period of time, which does not include maternity leaves, parental leaves, or military service, etc.