Post­doc­to­ral Re­searc­her in Pro­tein Bioc­he­mi­stry and Struc­tu­ral Bio­lo­gy

9.8.2021 | Avoimet työpaikat


The laboratory of Dr. Tommi Kajander at the Institute of Biotechnology, HiLIFE, University of Helsinki, Finland, is inviting applications for post-doctoral researcher in the area of protein biochemistry and structural biology in a joint project with Prof. Mart Saarma’s laboratory. We are seeking for dedicated and enthusiastic scientist to work on the structure and function of novel endoplasmic reticulum effector protein-receptor interactions in ER stress response regulation. Main targets are CDNF and MANF proteins and their interaction complexes in the ER.

The Institute of Biotechnology is a research institute at University of Helsinki, located in the Viikki science park. The institute harbors ~35 research groups and 250 researchers, and it operates at the highest international level. For more information on the Institute, please visit https://www.helsinki.fi/en/hilife-institute-of-biotechnology.
The institute has excellent infrastructure for structural biology (X-ray, CryoEM, NMR) including the crystallography core facility run by the PI.

The post-doctoral applicants should hold PhD in biochemistry or a related field. Strong experience in protein biochemistry including cloning and mutagenesis and protein expression and purification, from various hosts and good communication skills in English are required. Knowledge and experience in structural biology and molecular biophysics techiques and cell culture is beneficial. This is an opportunity to work on high impact targets and obtain in depth technical skills in the research area. The position will provide excellent opportunities for collaborations, as this is a joint project in close collaboration with Prof. Mart Saarma’s group, with also potential international and national collaborations and visits to e.g. synchrotron sources in Europe (ESRF, DLS, MAXIV). An attitude to carry out ambitious research projects, good problem solving skills, goal-oriented mind-set and willingness to learn and apply new methodologies is highly appreciated. The working language of the laboratory is English; knowledge of Finnish is not a requirement.

The postdoctoral position is initially limited to 1 year, with a possibility of extension to three years. The salaries will be based on the University salary scheme (level 5) for teaching and research personnel composed of both task specific and personal performance component The position is available immediately or as agreed.

Application should include the following documents as a single pdf file (max 5 pages): CV (max 2 pages), list of publications, motivation letter (max 1 page) including a description of your research interests, and the names and contact details of at least two referees. Please submit your application, together with the required pdf attachment, through the University of Helsinki electronic recruitment system by clicking on the ‘Apply for job’ button. Internal applicants (i.e., current employees of the University of Helsinki) should submit their applications through the SAP HR portal. For technical support regarding the recruitment system, please contact ‘rekrytointi@helsinki.fi’.

The deadline for the applications is 31st of August, 2021, or until suitable candidate have been found.

For informal inquiries, contact ‘tommi.kajander(at)helsinki.fi’
See also:

For technical support regarding the recruitment system, please contact rekrytointi@helsinki.fi.

Selected recent references related to project and the laboratory:
Kovaleva V, Yu LY, Ivanova L, Nam J, Eesmaa A, Kumpula EP, Huiskonen J, Lindholm P, Voutilainen M, Karelson M, Saarma M. MANF regulates unfolded protein response and neuronal survival through its ER-located receptor IRE1α bioRxiv 2020.09.22.307744

Eesmaa A, Yu LY, Göös H, Nõges K, Kovaleva V, Hellman M, Zimmermann R, Jung M, Permi P, Varjosalo M, Lindholm P, Saarma M. The cytoprotective protein MANF promotes neuronal survival independently from its role as a GRP78 cofactor. J Biol Chem. 2021 Jan 15;296:100295.

Lindahl M, Saarma M, Lindholm P. Unconventional neurotrophic factors CDNF and MANF: Structure, physiological functions and therapeutic potential. Neurobiol Dis. 2017 Jan;97(Pt B):90-102.

Molecular Modelling Mage – Orion

15.7.2021 | Avoimet työpaikat


Orion Corporation operates in more than 20 countries, where we Orionees, 3200 in total, work in all kinds of positions. Among us there are Research Scientists, Laboratory Technicians, Engineers and IT Specialists as well as people working in Production, just to mention some examples. We offer diverse and responsible jobs to our personnel in a truly multi-disciplinary work environment. We encourage people to develop their competences and offer opportunities to affect the job description and creating their own career path at Orion. We are searching for top talents who are ready to share our passion for the work that we do.

Orion is seeking a Molecular Modelling Mage (an experienced Senior Scientist) to further develop  our capabilities and push the boundaries of theoretical drug discovery research carried out in Computational Medicine Design (CMD) unit.

Description of position

The Molecular Modelling Mage will work in the drug discovery projects linking and interfacing with biology and chemistry with both ab initio and data-driven perspectives. For this, it is critical to constantly rediscover the best suitable strategy for each project and define how to increase the target understanding and how to navigate the path of multiparameter optimization in modality design. For example, approaches can be both ligand- and structure-based virtual screening and design, protein modelling, physics-based simulations, structure-activity data analysis, machine learning and utilization of variety of in-house and public data sources. The Molecular Modelling Mage will collaborate closely with a broad range of scientists including other modellers in the CMD unit, medicinal chemists, pharmacologists and biologists.

The position is full-time and you will be based in Espoo or Turku, Finland.

Description of unit

Orion is a globally operating Finnish company listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange. Orion develops, manufactures and markets human and veterinary pharmaceuticals, active pharmaceutical ingredients and diagnostic tests for global markets. Orion’s pharmaceutical innovations are created within its R&D organization, including e.g. non-clinical research, clinical development, formulation development and medical affairs. The organization employs top professionals in the field of drug molecule development and optimization.

Medicine Design contributes to the drug discovery process of Orion R&D from target validation all the way to the candidate nomination. We are responsible for translating new drug targets to therapeutical modalities together with other line functions. Our scientists in biology, chemistry and computer-aided medicine design are key players in the multiple research programs driven by Orion’s therapy areas of Neurological Disorders and Oncology. We also support our colleagues around R&D with our core competences.


To be a successful Molecular Modelling Mage, you should have the following educational and professional work experiences:

  • Ph.D. from a suitable field, e.g. computational chemistry, bioorganic chemistry, biophysics, computer science or biochemistry
  • Concrete post-doctoral or industrial experience (above five years)
  • Broad experience in computational drug design, mastery of state-of-the-art ligand- and structure-based methods and their applications for medicine design
  • Solid understanding of fields relevant in the discovery process (e.g. medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, biochemistry, cell biology, structural biology, biophysics)

In addition, in depth experience in at least one of the following aspects:

  • Application of large-scale modern data science, machine learning and cheminformatics for drug discovery
  • Large-scale molecular dynamics simulations (e.g., relative and absolute free energy methods) for protein-ligand complexes
  • Track record of progressing modalities from hit identification through lead to clinical candidate

Experience with commercial molecular modelling software platforms, data pipelining tools (e.g. Knime) and programming/scripting/data analysis/data visualization (e.g. Python) is desirable.

We expect from all scientists the ability to work both independently and in multidisciplinary teams consisting of in-house scientists and external collaborators. A demonstrated record of research productivity and excellent oral and written communication skills in English are expected.

We offer

We offer you great, highly professional & experienced colleagues and the opportunity to show your talent and challenge yourself with interesting tasks in a modern multidisciplinary environment. Computational methods play a key role in Orion drug discovery so this is an opportunity to contribute to helping patients in need. Generous health and welfare benefits are available, as well as support for international relocation. Read more about R&D’s pipeline from here. 

Additional information

Is this the position you have been waiting for? Please send your cover letter and CV by 8th August 2021 and let us know what inspires you! Our application period is extended due to holiday period in Finland.

For additional information on the position, please contact Heikki Käsnänen, Head of Computational Medicine Design, +358104265279, during the following times: July 8th and 9th: 11 AM to 2 PM (EEST).


Approved medical examination which also includes drug testing is required prior to the employment. We will also carry out a security clearance prior to the employment for the selected person.