Postdoctoral Scholar/Membrane Cooperativity Unit

The position

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:
The Membrane Cooperativity Unit at OIST invites applications for a postdoctoral position (Postdoctoral Scholar). We aim to reveal, at very fundamental levels, mechanisms for signal transduction in the plasma membrane and for regulation of neuronal network formation. Our approach is unique in that we directly image and track "single molecules" of interest in living cells and investigate how they move around and interact with each other in living cells.


We are looking for a postdoctoral fellow who will work on one or more of the following general projects, using single-molecule methods.

(1) Signal transduction mechanism in the plasma membrane, particularly in the context of the signal transduction of Fc epsilon receptor, a GPI-anchored receptor CD59, and G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs).

(2) Activity-dependent reorganization and structural plasticity of the synapses by studying single-molecule dynamics of neuronal receptors and adhesion molecules.

(3) Regulation mechanisms for signal transduction in the plasma membrane by the actin-based membrane skeleton We are looking for a postdoctoral fellow who will work on one or more of the following general projects, using single-molecule methods.

(4) Software development for analyzing single molecule movies.

(5) Instrument/software development for automating single-molecule imaging of live cells. We are looking for an energetic individual, having the mind of both creativity and teamorientation.


Ph.D. or other doctoral degrees in any fields of science, medicine, or engineering. Experience with cell biology, biophysics, programming, advanced optical and electron microscopy, and/or electrical circuits is preferred.

Compensation and Benefits

In accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulations


Submission Documents

(1) CV (including a photo is preferable; in English or Japanese)

(2) Lists of publications and presentations (include invited lectures at universities)

(3) Reprints or copies of major academic publications or reviews written by the candidate, up to 5 items

(4) Summary of research experience (1~3 pages [letter size or A4] in English or Japanese)

(5) Summary of research interest to be conducted at the Kusumi Unit (0.5~1 pages [letter size or A4] in English or Japanese)

(6) Names and contact details of two referees

*You could initially contact us by simply sending the documents (1), (2), and (3) indicated above before you start preparing the entire set of application materials. This could save your time and efforts

* Prior to the start of employment all new hires are required to successfully complete a background check. Personal information including employment history and academic background should be submitted to OIST after a conditional offer of employment.


How to apply

Apply by emailing your Submission Documents to: Akihiro.kusumi[at]

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

By way of submitted documents, and, for selected applicants, an interview and/or a seminar in person or Zoom

  • 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 applications from underrepresented groups.
  • 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.
  • Please view OIST policy for rules on external professional activities
  • Further details about the University can be viewed on the OIST website
Job Type
Starting Date
As early as possible
Employment Term

Full-time, fixed term appointment till December 31, 2025 with the possibility of renewal. Contract initially with 3-month probationary period (inclusive).

Working Hours

9:00-17:30 (Discretionary)

Report To
Prof. Akihiro Kusumi /
Job Location
Main Campus: 1919-1 Tancha, Onna-son, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa
Application Due Date
31 March 2024
*Application will be closed once the position is filled.

We thank all those who apply but only those selected for further consideration will be contacted.

If you have any question, please contact us