Call #2021-C01 closed since March 23, 2021

Translocation of Complex Macromolecules Across the Intestinal Epithelial Barrier

Call closed!

1 Group Leader (m/f/d)
2 Postdoctoral Researchers (m/f/d)
2 Research Assistants (m/f/d)

What we are looking for

The BioMed X Institute in Heidelberg, Germany, is establishing a new, fully funded research group in the field of:

Translocation of Complex Macromolecules Across the Intestinal Epithelial Barrier

If you hold a PhD or Master's degree and have an outstanding track record or strong interest in the field of drug delivery, we invite you to apply with a project proposal for this position in our new research group (1 group leader, 2 postdoctoral researchers, 2 research assistants).

Each BioMed X project team is sponsored by an industry partner. The sponsor of this call for application is Janssen.

Complex macromolecules, including biologics such as monoclonal antibodies, have transformed the treatment of immune-related diseases, but they need to be delivered by injection, which limits their use relative to oral delivery. Although there are several techniques available to shield these macromolecules from the harsh conditions of the gastrointestinal tract, little progress has been made to translocate complex macromolecules across the intestinal epithelial barrier into systemic circulation.

The aim of this project is to discover novel transport mechanisms in the human intestinal tract which could be utilized for oral systemic delivery of diverse therapeutic modalities (e.g. peptides, oligonucleotides and antibodies). The resulting delivery platform should enable the development of a new generation of oral immunotherapies for the benefit of patients. The key objectives include:

  • To model and explore the induction mechanisms of transcytosis pathways in the human intestinal epithelium;

  • To systematically screen for the most efficient chemical or biological moieties that induce transcytosis of complex biomolecules across the intestinal epithelium;

  • To validate the efficiency of the resulting platform with a selection of diverse therapeutic modalities.

Proposals building on innovative ideas supported by first experimental findings are particularly encouraged. Group leader positions are intended to suit candidates who would like to develop themselves towards a leadership career path either in academia or industry and have typically between four and eight years of relevant postdoctoral research experience. Candidates for postdoctoral positions are expected to have completed a PhD or equivalent within the last four years and a certain degree of specialization in one or more relevant cutting-edge technologies.

What we offer

  • A position in a fully funded research group, the funding package covering salaries, consumables, services, travels, as well as access to the core facilities of neighboring research institutions and biotechnology companies in Heidelberg.

  • An initial term of two years, with the possibility of prolongation for up to two additional years.

  • An exciting research opportunity in a multidisciplinary and international research institution with a very collegial and flexible working environment.

There is flexibility over starting dates, but successful applicants are welcome to take up post starting July 1, 2021.

Application & Selection Process

  • Please apply online via the online application system on this website.

  • As part of the online application procedure, you will be asked to submit: (i) A competitive project proposal that gives us an idea of your scientific expertise and creative potential (3-5 pages describing an interesting core hypothesis, scientific rationale, and a unique experimental approach). Proposals building on very original ideas supported by first experimental findings are particularly encouraged; (ii) Your curriculum vitae including your publication record.

  • Deadline for applications: March 21, 2021.

  • After a first selection round, candidates will be invited to a five-day innovation boot camp in Heidelberg (or virtual if pandemic regulations do not allow onsite meetings) from May 16 to 20, 2021. With guidance of experienced mentors, candidates will jointly work on their project proposals and present them in front of a jury on the final day. Successful candidates will be offered a position at the BioMed X Institute in Heidelberg, Germany.

About BioMed X

BioMed X is an independent research institute located on the campus of the University of Heidelberg in Germany. Together with our partners, we identify big biomedical research challenges and provide creative solutions by combining global crowdsourcing with local incubation of the world’s brightest early-career research talents. Each of the highly diverse research teams at BioMed X has access to state-of-the-art research infrastructure and is continuously guided by experienced mentors from academia and industry. At BioMed X, we combine the best of two worlds – academia and industry – and enable breakthrough innovation by making biomedical research more efficient, more agile, and more fun.


BioMed X Institute

Im Neuenheimer Feld 515
69120 Heidelberg

Phone: +49 6221 426 11 0


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