Postdoctoral position in the combined fields of Cryo-EM and Molecular Dynamics

The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST; see is a dynamic new graduate university of science and technology in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. The university is located on 85 hectares of protected forestland overlooking beautiful shoreline and coral reefs. The campus is striking architecturally, and the facilities are outstanding (OIST campus video tour). There are no academic departments, which facilitates multidisciplinary research. Outstanding resources and equipment are provided and managed to encourage easy access and collaboration. English is the official language of the University, and the university research community is fully international, with more than 50 countries represented. OIST is rapidly gaining recognition in the worldwide academic community as a model for excellence in education and research.

Position summary

Applications are invited for a 2+1-year postdoc position in The Structural Cellular Biology Unit ( at OIST. Our research in biology spans from prokaryotic membrane biology to mammalian receptor complexes including signaling by synaptic vesicles, using mainly but not exclusively cryo-electron tomography (ET). An equally strong research activity in the group is the development of novel methods in imaging, in particular not-averaged 3D-reconstructions at the molecular resolution level, and data analysis.

We are now also beginning to make use of Molecular Dynamics to enhance our understanding of protein function.

We are searching for a person with genuine interest in learning developments and applications in the area of Cryo-EM Tomography and Molecular Dynamics, methods we aim at adapting in a novel way to analyze protein functions. 

The merits of the project results stem in part from the combination of two different physical modalities. Firstly, the postdoc will be involved in the software application and development for Cryo-EM Tomography reconstruction, including the implementation of algorithms developed in the unit, and the real data collection. Secondly, the postdoc will be involved in molecular modeling of protein structures we are analyzing, including Molecular Dynamics simulations. Thirdly, the postdoc will be involved in the further development of our established collaboration with an expert Molecular Dynamics group in the USA in order to ensure the proper use of the combined physical modalities in the analysis. 


1919‐1 Tancha, Onna‐son, Okinawa, Japan 904-0495



PhD in one or a combination of the following disciplines: (bio-)physics, applied computer science, (biomedical) engineering or a closely related field.

The ability to work independently and to write research articles. The applicant should have a genuine interest in learning and applying new methods and techniques, including related software development, and the use of state-of-the-art Cryo-EM facilities.

Proficiency in both written and spoken English, capability to interact well within a team, and to be able to work with two collaborating teams.


Understanding of Cryo-EM Tomography.

Understanding the basics of statistical physics and protein biophysics.

Experience with Cryo-EM data collection, Tomography reconstruction or Molecular modeling.

Report to 

Professor Ulf Bo Skoglund / Structural Cellular Biology Unit

Starting Date 

Earliest in Spring of 2019

Term & Working Hours 

Term: Full-time, fixed term initial appointment for 1 or 2 years with possibility of renewal up to total 3 years upon satisfactory progress.    

Working hours: 9:00-17:30 (Discretionary)

Compensation & Benefits 

Compensation in accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulations


Relocation, housing and commuting allowances
Annual paid leave and summer holidays
Health insurance (Private School Mutual Aid )
Welfare pension insurance (kousei-nenkin)
Worker’s accident compensation insurance (roudousha-saigai-hoshou-hoken)

How To Apply 

Apply by emailing your Submission Documents to:

SCB [at]

(Please replace [at] with @ before using this email address)

or send by post to the following address:

Skoglund Unit,

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University

1919-1, Onna, Onna-son, Okinawa 904-0495, Japan

Submission Documents 

  1. Cover letter.
  2. Curriculum Vitae with a list of publications
  3. Research statement, including research interests and future plan.

These 3 documents should be combined into 1 pdf file.

Independently we also ask those applicants scheduled for an interview, to arrange for 3 letters of reference to be sent to us directly from the referees (preferably by E-mail). Please indicate where you first saw the job advertisement. 

* Please be sure to indicate where you first saw the job advertisement.

Application Due Date 

Applications deadline will continue until the position is filled. (Applications will be screened upon arrival)


  • OIST Graduate University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educator and employer and is committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty, students and staff. The University strongly encourages women and minority candidates to apply.
  • Information provided by applicants or references will be kept confidential, documents will not be returned. All applicants will be notified regarding the status of their applications.
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  • Further details about the University can be viewed on the OIST website