Do you want to contribute to improving human health?

Applications are invited for the postdoctoral position in structural immunology to join a collaborative project between the labs of Joanna Rorbach (Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics) and Taras Kreslavsky (Department of Medicine, Solna) at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.

The project

The project aims to tackle the rules of antigen recognition by γδT cells. Of the three classes of lymphocytes that constitute the adaptive immune system of jawed vertebrates, γδT cells are the only class for which principles of antigen recognition remain enigmatic and the nature of the antigens is largely elusive. Screens performed by the Kreslavsky lab have recently identified several novel unexpected γδT cell receptor (γδTCR) ligands (see for further details). In this project, we will combine immunological expertise of the Kreslavsky lab with the structural biology expertise of the Rorbach lab to solve structures of γδTCRs with their unusual ligands. This in turn will shed light on the rules of antigen recognition of these mysterious cells, and through that – on their functions in immune responses against pathogens and cancer cells.

Joanna Rorbach’s lab

Our current research encompasses structural, biochemical, and genetic studies of patients with inherited diseases as well as basic scientific approaches to understand the regulation of gene expression in mitochondria in the context of immunity, and other aspects of mitochondrial metabolism and immunometabolism (e.g. Zhang et al. JCI Insight 2023; Kruger at al. Nature Commun. 2023; Itoh et al. Nature, 2022; Cipullo et al. Nature Commun, 2021). The overall aim of the group is to combine these different areas of research to get insights into disease pathophysiology and to develop novel treatments.

Taras Kreslavsky’s lab

We are an international team of enthusiastic researchers that studies cellular and molecular mechanisms of cell fate decisions in the immune system with a focus on two areas: transcriptional regulation of these decisions and development and function of innate-like lymphocytes (Kreslavsky et al, Nat Immunol, 2017; Rauschmeier et al, EMBO J, 2019; Dunst et al, JLB, 2020; Glaros et al, Immunity, 2021; Rauschmeier et al, J Exp Med, 2022). This project will focus on the latter direction, specifically – on the biology γδT cells – arguably the least understood cell type of the adaptive immune system.

Your profile

Enthusiastic and motivated applicants should have a strong background in structural biology and molecular biology. Previous immunology experience is desirable but not required.

The successful applicant should be knowledgeable of biological advancements, demonstrate a promising publication record, and have a rigorous scientific approach.

Good documentation skills as well as proficiency in both spoken and written English are required.

The successful candidates should be willing to work in a highly collaborative environment and to pursue his/her own independent research. Our research group is located in the world-leading Karolinska Institutet and works with groups within Sweden and abroad.

Entry requirements


To be eligible for employment as a postdoctor a doctoral degree or a foreign degree deemed to be equivalent to a doctoral degree is required. This eligibility requirement must be fulfilled at the latest at the time of the employment decision. It is considered as an advantage if you have completed your doctoral degree within the last three years, if there are special reasons, your degree may have been completed earlier.

Postdoctoral scholarship:

Scholarships for postdoctoral qualification can be established for foreign researchers who place their qualifications in Sweden. The purpose of scholarships for postdoctoral qualification is to promote internationalization and contribute to research qualification after a doctorate or equivalent.

A scholarship for carrying out postdoctoral research can be granted for a maximum of two years within a four year period following the receipt of a doctoral degree or equivalent.
To be eligible for a postdoctoral scholarship, the person must have obtained a doctorate or a foreign degree deemed to be equivalent to a doctorate. Applicants who have not completed a doctorate at the end of the application period may also apply, provided that all requirements for a completed degree are met before the (intended) start date of the post doctoral education.

The head of the department determines whether their previous training and scholarly qualifications correspond to a Swedish doctorate or higher.

Type of scholarship

The amount is tax free and it is set for twelve months at a time, paid out on a six months basis. In exceptional cases, shorter periods may be acceptable.

What do we offer?

A creative and inspiring environment with wide-ranging expertise and interests. Karolinska Institutet is one of the world's leading medical universities. At Karolinska Institutet, we conduct successful medical research and hold the largest range of medical education in Sweden. At KI, you get to meet researchers working with a wide range of specialisms and methods, giving you ample opportunity to exchange knowledge and experience with the various scientific fields within medicine and health. It is the crossover collaborations, which have pushed KI to where it is today, at the forefront of global research. Several of the people you meet in healthcare are educated at KI. A close relationship with the health care providers is important for creating groundbreaking top quality education and research.

Location: Solna Campus

Application process

An employment application must contain the following documents in English:

  1. A complete curriculum vitae, including date of the thesis defence, title of the thesis, previous academic positions, academic title, current position, academic distinctions
  2. A complete list of publications
  3. A cover letter
  4. Verifications for crediting of illness, military service, work for labour unions or student organisations, parental leave or similar circumstances

The application is to be submitted on the Varbi recruitment system.

Welcome to apply at the latest April 15th 2024.

Want to make a difference? Join us and contribute to better health for all

First day of employment Upon agreement
Salary Scholarship or Monthly salary
Reference number STÖD 2-1053/2024
  • Joanna Rorbach,
Published 07.Mar.2024
Last application date 15.Apr.2024 11:59 PM CEST

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