The University of Helsinki, founded in 1640, is one of the world’s leading universities for multidisciplinary research. The university has an international academic community of 40,000 students and staff members.

The immuno-oncology research team coordinated by Dr Jeroen Pouwels at the University of Helsinki Faculty of Medicine is looking to hire an ambitious

Postdoc in Translational Immuno-Oncology

The candidate will join a collaborative immuno-oncology project that seeks new ways to sensitize breast cancer to immune checkpoint inhibitors. The candidate will join a translational research group which is part of the Medical Faculty’s Research Programs Unit (RPU; and is aligned with the Finnish Flagship Programme iCAN. The specific project advertised here is funded by an Academy of Finland project grant of Dr Jeroen Pouwels. A novel method to grow 3D cultures of intact fragments of patient-derived tissue (Patient-Derived Explant Cultures), which preserves the human tumor microenvironment including the immune-contexture, reflects inter- and intra-patient tumor heterogeneity and, importantly, can assess the efficacy of novel treatment regimens on real human tumors (Haikala et al., Nature Comm. 2019; PMID: 30728358), will play a central role in the project.

Candidate requirements:
•PhD degree in a relevant field
•Highly motivated with strong interest in translational cancer research
•Documented experience in experimental research; experience in immuno-oncology or immunology is not necessary but highly valued
•Good team player
•The working language of the research group is English, the chosen candidate must be able to communicate fluently in English

The initial contract will be for two years starting the first of September 2019 (with a 6 months trial period), though a later starting date is possible. Contract extension is possible. The salary is in accordance with the University salary system (for teaching and research personnel).

Applications must include a CV and an application letter clearly describing how your profile matches the candidate requirements and other previous achievements in the field. Also include names and contact information of two or three references.

The application, together with the required attachments, must be submitted through the University of Helsinki electronic recruitment system by clicking on Apply for job. Internal applicants (i.e., current employees of the University of Helsinki) must submit their applications through the SAP HR portal.

Deadline for applications is August 5, 2019.

For further inquiries regarding the position please contact Dr. Pouwels (jeroen.pouwels(at)

For further inquiries regarding the application procedure, please contact Human Resources Specialist Kaija Salenius (kaija.salenius(at)

For inquiries regarding the recruitment system, please contact recruitment(at)

Key publications by Dr. Pouwels († Shared contribution; Full list: Google Scholar):
1. Khan M, Salomaa S, Jacquemet G, Butt U, Miihkinen M, Deguchi T, Kremneva E, Lappalainen P, Humphries M, Pouwels J. The Sharpin interactome reveals a role for Sharpin in lamellipodium formation through the Arp2/3 complex. J. Cell Sc. 2017; 130, 3094-3107 doi:10.1242/jcs.200329.
2. Peuhu E, Salomaa S, De Franceschi N, Potter C, Sundberg J, Pouwels J. Integrin beta 1 inhibition alleviates the chronic hyperproliferative dermatitis phenotype of SHARPIN-deficient mice. PLoS One, 12(10): e0186628. 2017.
3. Lilja J, Zacharchenko T, Georgiadou M, Jacquemet G, De Franceschi N, Peuhu E, Pouwels J, Beifuss M, Boeckers T, Kreienkamp H-J, Barsukov I, Ivaska J. SHANK3 structure reveals a Ras-associated domain regulating integrin activation. Nat Cell Biol. 2017:19(4):292-305.
4. De Franceschi N, Arjonen A, Elkhatib N, Denessiouk K, Wrobel AG, Wilson TA, Pouwels J, Montagnac G, Owen DJ, Ivaska J. Selective integrin endocytosis is driven by interactions between the integrin alpha-chain and AP2. Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2016; 23: 172–179.
5. De Franceschi N, Peuhu E, Parsons M, Rissanen S, Vattulainen I, Salmi M, Ivaska J†, Pouwels J†. Mutually Exclusive Roles of SHARPIN in Integrin Inactivation and NF-κB Signaling. PloS One. 2015;10(11): e0143423.
6. Wang Y, Arjonen A, Pouwels J, Ta H, Pausch P, Bange G, Engel U, Pan X, Fackler OT, Ivaska J, Grosse R. Formin-like 2 Promotes beta1-Integrin Trafficking and Invasive Motility Downstream of PKCalpha. Dev. Cell. 2015;34: 475-483.
7. Bouvard D†, Pouwels J†, De Franceschi N, Ivaska J. Integrin inactivators: balancing cellular functions in vitro and in vivo. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2013;14: 430-442.
8. Pouwels J, De Franceschi N, Rantakari P, Auvinen K, Karikoski M, Mattila E, Potter C, Sundberg JP, Hogg N, Gahmberg CG, Salmi M, Ivaska J. SHARPIN Regulates Uropod Detachment in Migrating Lymphocytes. Cell Rep. 2013;5: 619-628.
9. Pouwels J, Nevo J, Pellinen T, Ylanne J, Ivaska J. Negative regulators of integrin activity. J Cell Sci. 2012;125: 3271-3280.
10. Rantala JK†, Pouwels J†, Pellinen T, Veltel S, Mattila E, Laasola P, Potter CS, Duffy T, Sundberg JP, Kallioniemi O, Askari JA, Humphries M, Parsons M, Salmi M and Ivaska J. SHARPIN is an endogenous inhibitor of beta1-integrin activation. Nature Cell Biol. 13(11):1315-1324, 2011.

The Faculty of Medicine of the University of Helsinki promotes scientific research of a high standard and is responsible for providing research-based undergraduate and postgraduate education in medicine, dentistry, psychology and logopedics, as well as for the English-language Master’s Programme in Translational Medicine. In addition to its teaching and research activities, the Faculty serves as a significant expert organisation in the healthcare sector and contributes to the discourse on ethics in the field. In terms of research, the Faculty aims for a place among the best medical faculties in the world, while consolidating and strengthening its status as a top-level institution of medical education.
Together with the Helsinki University Hospital (HUS) and the Helsinki Institute of Life Sciences (HiLIFE), the Faculty of Medicine constitutes the Academic Medical Center Helsinki (AMCH). This medical center has been very successful in international comparisons, ranking among the top 10 medical campuses in Europe and among the top 50 globally.

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05.08.2019 23:59 EEST