Universiteit Leiden

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Associate or Full Professor Biochemistry of drug-target interactions

Vacancy number
Job type
Academic staff
Hours (in fte)
External/ internal
Placed on
9 November 2021
Closing date
3 December 2021 Vacancy closed

The Faculty of Science and the Institute of Biology Leiden are looking for an

Associate or Full Professor Biochemistry of drug-target interactions (1.0 FTE)

Vacancy number 21-574

Key responsibilities

The Institute of Biology Leiden (IBL) is engaged in high impact research and education activities under three main divisions: microbial, plant, and animal sciences with a broad scope ranging from molecular and cellular levels, to organismal and population levels. The IBL has a collaborative atmosphere that is fostered by strong expertise focused around four Research Themes: Bioactive Molecules, Host-Microbe Interactions, Development & Disease, and Evolution & Biodiversity. The overall leading principle of our research is harnessing biodiversity for health. The IBL is a growing institute and wishes to recruit three new group leaders who are, or will become, the future leaders in their field of expertise for both research and education.

In the division of Microbial Sciences, we perform multidisciplinary research to understand the structure and function of microbes at all levels of biological organization, from small molecules and cellular structures at atomic resolution, to multicellular communities. In doing so, we harness Nature's Biodiversity to discover novel bioactive molecules and enzymes, which find application in the clinical trajectory and in biotechnology. For this new position, the focus lies on the Research Theme Bioactive Molecules. Here, we study the biological role of bioactive natural substances and how they affect the complex biological processes relevant to health and disease. A major focus of the appointee’s research program will be to identify and mechanistically characterize how such compounds elicit their effects in protecting humans, animals, and plants against disease and biotic stress. Directly relevant to this focus is the IBL’s strong track record in the discovery and development of new antibiotics to combat antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

Selection criteria

  • A PhD in biological sciences or related field and at least several years of independent research and teaching experience as PI;
  • Strong expertise in protein biochemistry and protein-drug interactions;
  • Expertise in cell-based assays (prokaryotic and eukaryotic);
  • Affinity with molecular biology and biophysical techniques for studying small molecule-protein interactions and protein-protein interactions;
  • Affinity for structural biology, protein mutagenesis, and protein engineering;
  • A track record with high-quality publications demonstrating collaborations and multidisciplinarity;
  • A broad international network of collaborations;
  • Successful in raising research funds;
  • Ability to foster an inspiring working environment for a research team, in which PhDs and postdocs feel supported and have the ability to thrive;
  • Proven experience and clear affinity with developing and implementing teaching programs at BSc and/or MSc level;
  • Energetic ‘out-of-the-box’ thinker with a clear view on a challenging and innovative research and education program;
  • A networker who can readily engage in collaborations within and outside our institute
  • Experience and affinity with project and management tasks;
  • Excellent command of the English language;
  • A good command of the Dutch language, or prepared to learn the Dutch language.

Our organisation

The Faculty of Science is a world-class faculty where staff and students work together in a dynamic international environment. It is a faculty where personal and academic development are top priorities. Our people are driven by curiosity to expand fundamental knowledge and to look beyond the borders of their own discipline; their aim is to benefit science, and to make a contribution to addressing the major societal challenges of the future.

The research carried out at the faculty is very diverse, ranging from mathematics, information science, astronomy, physics, chemistry and bio-pharmaceutical sciences to biology and environmental sciences. The research activities are organized in eight institutes. These institutes offer eight BSc and twelve MSc programmes. The faculty has grown in recent years and now has more than 1,300 staff and almost 4,000 students. We are located at the heart of Leiden’s Bio Science Park, one of Europe’s biggest science parks, where university and business life come together.

The Institute of Biology Leiden (IBL) is an internationally oriented institute for biology research and education that is part of the Faculty of Science at Leiden University. Embedded within the institute are the Netherlands Center for Electron Nanoscopy (NeCEN) and the department Science Communication and Society. The IBL has strong links with the sister institutes in the Faculty of Sciences, with the Leiden University Medical Centre (LUMC) and the Naturalis Biodiversity Centre (NBC). Our aim is to perform top quality innovative fundamental and strategic research that contributes to solutions for global societal challenges such as the threat to biodiversity, antimicrobial resistance and preventing disease development in humans, animals and plants. We have a strong track record in collaboration with industry.

Terms and conditions

The successful candidate will be offered a position as principal investigator, at a level that depends on her/his track record. We offer a five- to six-year term position, with the possibility of a tenured position subsequently. The salary ranges from €5.275,- to €7.054,- (scale 13 or 14) for associate professors and €6.510,- to €8.508,- (scale 16) for full professors. Salaries and conditions are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax reduction.

Leiden University requires teaching staff to obtain the University Teaching Qualification (UTQ). If the successful applicant does not already possess this qualification or its equivalent, he/she must be willing to obtain this certificate within two years. Within two years, a Dutch language proficiency of minimally level B2 is required.

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.

The Faculty of Science strives for excellence in a caring institute. We wish to reflect society in all aspects, as we believe that this improves the dynamics in our organization. Therefore, we support and understand the need for a work/life/family balance and consequently varying working hours and places. We believe that doing good science is fun, and goes hand in hand with an ambitious yet friendly culture. In the Netherlands, parental leave is standard for 16 weeks. Child care is available at and near the Bio Science Park. For more information see the website.


Inquiries about the position can be made to Gilles van Wezel, e-mail: g.wezel@biology.leidenuniv.nl. phone +31-71-5274310. If you have any questions about the procedure, please contact the IBL Office: sylvius@biology.leidenuniv.nl.


Applications should be sent by email to the IBL office at jobs@biology.leidenuniv.nl. Please ensure that you upload the following additional documents quoting the vacancy number:

  • A motivation letter;
  • A description of research interests and experience;
  • A full CV (including a list of publications, and the names and addresses of at least two persons who have agreed to be contacted for references).

Only applications received December 3rd 2021 can be considered.

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