Postdoc in Orthopaedics Research
Utrecht University

Postdoc Position in the Orthopaedics Research Group of Prof. dr. M.A. Tryfonidou

Job description

For the NWO Vici project “NC-CHOICE”, we are looking for a motivated post-doctoral candidate. The project will focus on the development of an RNA-based cell-free nanomedicine to treat lower back pain. Back pain due to disc degeneration is a chronic disease that substantially affects daily life. The NC-CHOICE project exploits the biology of notochordal cells, cells that instruct disc development, by studying the signalling molecules through proteomics & RNAseq.

The candidate will enforce the orthopaedics group that is embedded in the Regenerative Medicine Utrecht collaboration and housed at the Regenerative Medicine Center Utrecht. You will be closely working together with other team members appointed for NCCHOICE (1 PD, 2 PhDs, 1 technician) and collaborators at UU (Prof. Marca Wauben), UMC Utrecht (Prof. Ray Schiffelers, dr.Laura Creemers), TU/e (Prof. Keita Ito), and Maastricht University (Prof. Tim Welting).


The candidate will work within an interdisciplinary team in order to contribute to the aforementioned overall aim of the NC-CHOICE project. Readily identified mRNA targets that stimulate two rejuvenating signalling pathways will be delivered with nanoparticles technology and studied at the cellular and tissue level. In particular, the candidate, will work with integrating analysis proteomics and RNAseq on extracellular vesicles of notochordal cells to identify and select additional targets to further enhance the rejuvenating effects.

The project will work upscale from cell to tissue to ultimately a proof of concept in an animal study. The candidate should have a Master’s degree in either life sciences (e.g., biomedical sciences, technical medicine, biology of disease), human medicine or veterinary science with academic excellence in research, demonstrated by an outstanding PhD thesis. Skills in “omics” approaches, prior experience in RNA or lipid nanoparticle delivery are preferred. Biomolecular and biochemical analysis, cell/tissue culture skills are prerequisites. Knowledge of Dutch Art. 13f.2 and willingness to work with experimental laboratory animals and cadaveric materials are highly desirable, as is previous experience in student supervision. The ideal applicant is highly motivated to pursue an academic carrier, creative, excels in a multidisciplinary team, and has excellent English written and oral communication skills. You will be supervised by Prof. Tryfonidou and supervise the two PhD student appointed on the project. You are also expected to supervise Bachelor and Master students in their thesis assignments.


We offer a full-time position for an initial period of 1 year, with the possibility of extension for three more years. The gross salary starts at scale 10 (between €2,960 and €4,670 depending on previous qualifications and experience) per month for a full-time employment in the first year (according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities). Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8 % and a year-end bonus of 8.3 % per year. In addition, Utrecht University offers excellent secondary conditions, including an attractive retirement scheme, (partly paid) parental leave and flexible employment conditions (multiple choice model). For more information, please visit working at Utrecht University.

About the organization

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions, Life Sciences and Sustainability.

The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine has a unique position in the Netherlands. Not only is this the only institution where veterinarians are trained, researchers are also working together on innovative scientific research. In addition, the faculty provides specialist clinical care in the largest Academic Veterinary Hospital in Europe. Thanks to this position, the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine is a point of contact for all veterinary matters, both nationally and increasingly internationally. The faculty employs approximately 900 veterinarians, scientists and support staff and counts 1,500 students.

Additional information

For more information about this position, please contact Prof. dr. M.A. Tryfonidou via

The preferred starting date is October 2022.


Everyone deserves to feel at home at our university. We welcome employees with a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives.

To apply, please send your curriculum vitae, including a letter of motivation via the "apply" button.

The application deadline is

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