Postdoctoral position Molecular Plant-Pathogen Interaction


A postdoctoral position is available at the Department of Biology at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, for a motivated postdoctoral researcher with an interest in biochemical and molecular aspects of plant-pathogen interactions.

Research Project: The aim of the research project is to characterize the biochemical activity and mode of action of the immune-related plant protein PATHOGENESIS-RELATED 1 (PR-1). PR-1 played a pioneering role in the discovery of plant innate immunity and is nowadays mainly known as a marker of salicylic-acid dependent immunity. In addition, it has been shown that PR-1 proteins have antimicrobial activity. However, the biochemical function of PR-1 has remained elusive.

We have recently demonstrated that PR-1 inhibits pathogen growth via sterol-sequestration (Gamir et al., Plant Journal, in print). This strategy is especially efficient against sterol-auxotroph pathogens such as Phytophthora. The main task of the new postdoctoral researcher is to better define the mechanism of action and the substrate specificity of PR-1. PR-1 is a founding member of the superfamily of CAP proteins (cysteine-rich secretory protein, antigen 5, and pathogenesis-related 1) that includes thousands of mostly secreted proteins from many eukaryotic species.

The biochemical function of these CAP proteins is largely unknown. Hence, another aim is to test various CAP proteins for sterol-binding and biological function.


Candidates should hold a PhD degree in Biochemistry or Molecular Biology. Candidates with experience in lipid biochemistry and liposomes are especially encouraged to apply. Experience in molecular plant pathology is an advantage but not an absolute requirement.


The position is available from January 2017 for 18 months.


Please send your CV, copies of your degrees, a letter of motivation and contact information of two referees via E-MAIL to:

Felix Mauch E-mail:

Tel.: + (41) (0)26300 8817

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