Position: Postdoctoral Position in Translational Ependymoma Research

Department: Pediatric Neurooncology

Code number: 2024-0033

The German Cancer Research Center is the largest biomedical research institution in Germany. With more than 3,000 employees, we operate an extensive scientific program in the field of cancer research.

The Division of Pediatric Neurooncology at the German Cancer Research Center and the Hopp Children's Cancer Center Heidelberg is offering a Postdoctoral Position in Translational Ependymoma Research.

The Hopp Children's Cancer Center Heidelberg (KiTZ) is a joint institution of the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), the Heidelberg University Hospital (UKHD) and the University of Heidelberg (UniHD). As a treatment and research center for oncological and hematological diseases in children and adolescents, the KiTZ is committed to scientifically explore the biology of childhood cancer and closely link promising research approaches with patient care – from diagnosis to treatment and aftercare.


Job description:

For expansion of translational ependymoma research, you'll collaborate on groundbreaking projects with specific contributions to targeting (epi-)genetic and immunological vulnerabilities, in vitro and in vivo tumor modelling, and understanding cellular and microenvironmental mechanisms of (radio-)therapy resistance. You’ll perform and coordinate preclinical validation and prospectively oversee the translational trajectory for clinical implementation of the identified targets and approaches. This will be realized in close collaboration with other KiTZ/DKFZ groups and the KiTZ clinical trial unit. Beside further developing these projects, you’ll have the exciting opportunity to explore large multi-omic ependymoma datasets, work with established in vivo tumor model systems (both patient-derived and genetic), rely on a rich tumor sample repertoir and generate additional data using cutting-edge next-generation technologies. Availability of a dedicated state-of-the-art computing cluster for data processing and downstream analysis is available in an outstanding environment and infrastructure for (pediatric) neurooncology research. Interdisciplinary projects connecting biology with medicine and discovery with translation as well as large-scale collaborative research funding such as a currently ongoing collaborative research center (SFB) focusing on glioblastoma enrich the productive working environment. Finally, a welcoming and supportive international community of highly collaborative and aspirational colleagues will support you to achieve your scientific goals and career plans. This position is designed to advance exciting ependymoma projects, hone your molecular biology skills and foster new learning. You’ll have the autonomy to delve into related ependymoma research questions that spark your interest.



  • Master's degree and PhD (or equivalent) in biology / molecular biology or a related subject
  • Excellent (postdoctoral) research experience in the field of (pediatric neuro-)oncology and a strong publication record
  • Expertise in (pediatric) basic and translational cancer research and hands-on experience with related wet lab and cutting-edge technologies
  • Ability to plan, direct and conduct wet lab research experiments
  • (Preferably) experience in the planning and execution of in vivo experiments
  • Ability to manage and coordinate projects at the interface of (basic) cancer research, immunooncology, genomics / bioinformatics and clinical translation
  • Independent and self-reliant way of working, characterized by a high degree of initiative and sense of responsibility
  • Drive to collaborate externally and internally and work within a team to achieve shared goals, ability to supervise MD/PhD/master students
  • Competence in supporting and initiating the acquisition of national and international third-party funding
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to write publications, present research proposals and results, and represent the lab at meetings and conferences
  • Fluency in verbal and written English

We offer:

  • Interesting, versatile workplace
  • Excellent framework conditions: state-of-the-art equipment and opportunity for international networking at the highest level
  • Remuneration according to TV-L incl. occupational pension plan for the public service and capital-forming payments
  • 30 days of vacation per year
  • Flexible working hours
  • Possibility of mobile work and part-time work
  • Family-friendly working environment, including parent-child room, counseling services, e.g. on Elder Care
  • Sustainable travel to work: subsidized Germany job ticket
  • Develop your full potential: access to the DKFZ International Postdoc Program and DKFZ Career Service with targeted offers for your personal development to further develop your talents
  • Our Corporate Health Management Program offers a holistic approach to your well-being

Important notice:

The DKFZ is subject to the regulations of the Infection Protection Act (IfSG). As a consequence, only persons who present proof of immunity against measles may work at the DKFZ.

Earliest possible start date: as soon as possible

Duration: The position is initially limited to 2 years with the possibility of prolongation. ‚Äč

Application deadline: 16.03.2024


Dr. Kristian Pajtler
Phone +49 6221/42-4585

Please note that we do not accept applications submitted via email.

The DKFZ is committed to increase the proportion of women in all areas and positions in which women are underrepresented. Qualified female applicants are therefore particularly encouraged to apply.

Among candidates of equal aptitude and qualifications, a person with disabilities will be given preference.

To apply for a position please use our online application portal (https://www.dkfz.de/en/stellenangebote/index.php).

We ask for your understanding that we cannot return application documents that are sent to us by post (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, Personalabteilung, Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, 69120 Heidelberg) and that we do not accept applications submitted via email. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.