Doctoral Researcher (PhD student)

Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research (IOW), Warnemünde

The Department Biological Oceanography of the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW) is offering a part-time (26 hrs/week) position as

Doctoral Researcher (PhD student)

starting on the 1st May 2020. Remuneration is paid in accordance with the TV-L salary scale at level EG 13 (65%) monthly gross salary. The employment is temporary for 3 years.

The IOW is an independent institute of the Leibniz Association, engaged in system analysis of coastal and marginal seas, with special focus on the Baltic Sea. The scientists of the four departments (Physical Oceanography and Instrumentation, Marine Chemistry, Biological Oceanography and Marine Geology) cooperate within the framework of a joint research program.

Job description

Extreme environments can select for mutualistic interactions between animals and their microbiota which are beneficial and often vital for the survival of the holobionts (i.e. the organized biological units composed of the host and associated microbes). The DFG-funded project CRASSOBIOM will focus on the investigation of the role of microbiome on the physiological stress responses and stress tolerance of an invertebrate host (the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas) and test the hypothesis that the interaction of C. gigas with its microbiota may facilitate the survival of oysters under the extremely variable and stressful conditions of the intertidal zone of the German Wadden Sea, where oysters invaded in the early 1990ies.

The PhD candidate will conduct laboratory experiments and field studies to assess the effects of microbiota and abiotic stressors on the physiology, immune functions and molecular stress responses in oysters and determine whether the physiological and molecular stress signatures of the host-microbiome interactions can be tracked in the natural habitats with the different degree of abiotic stress. Concerning this position the PhD candidate will focus on microbiome analyses while C. gigas features will be investigated by a second CRASSOBIOM PhD student supervised by Prof. Inna Sokolova (University of Rostock) and Dr. Mathias Wegner (Alfred-Wegener-Institute, Sylt), described in a separate job announcement. The project is mostly located at the IOW and involves short-term visits to conduct field experiments, collections and transcriptomics studies at the state-of-the-art marine facility of the AWI Sylt/List: https://www.awi.de/en/about-us/sites/sylt.html.

It is expected that the candidate will use the obtained data to submit a PhD thesis after three years and to publish the results in scientific journals and on scientific conferences. The interdisciplinary project character requires flexibility and willingness to work as part of a team.


The successful candidate is required to have a Diploma or Master degree in (micro-) biology or related fields such as bioinformatics, environmental sciences and technologies, or comparable. Profound knowledge of molecular biology techniques is essential. The ideal candidate has experience in the field of (meta)genomics and transcriptomics and its data evaluation with laboratory as well as field samples. Good programming skills in Python and/or R are advantageous. Knowledge in scientific writing and presentation, fluent English speaking and writing skills, and the ability to work well in a team are expected.

Applicants are asked to send their complete applications (CV, copies of certificates, references) quoting the code: CRASSOBIOM (Bio 01/2020) until 1 March 2020 to bewerbung.biologie(at)io-warnemuende.de or

Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde, Dept. Human Resources, Seestraße 15, D-18119 Rostock, Germany

Applications of disabled persons with same professional and personal qualification will be treated preferentially. Please indicate a handicap in the cover letter and enclose the relevant certificate.

The job advertisement is aimed at all persons regardless of their gender.

Applications of female candidates are expressly encouraged and will be treated preferentially in case of equal qualifications and suitability, as the post to be filled belongs to a structural unit in which women are underrepresented.

The Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research offers a varied work in the immediate vicinity of the Baltic Sea. Interdisciplinary research topics on the Baltic Sea

ecosystem, broad in-house expertise in physical, chemical and biological oceanography, and marine geology, state-of-the-art-laboratory equipment and infrastructure together with modern facilities provide an excellent framework for best research conditions.

The IOW promotes equal opportunities and was awarded the Total Equality Award (TEQ) regularly since 2013. An overview of our measures to equal opportunities and to improve the compatibility of work and family can be found at https://www.io-warnemuende.de/equal-opportunity.html.

Application and travel costs cannot be reimbursed.

For further Information please contact:

Prof. Dr. Matthias Labrenz, matthias.labrenz(at)io-warnemuende.de

Dr. Johannes Werner, johannes.werner(at)io-warnemuende.de

or visit our website: https://www.io-warnemuende.de/.