PhD candidate – studying chemodiversity and chemical plasticity in poplar (f/m/x)


Image Full time
Image Neuherberg near Munich

We are Helmholtz Munich. In a rapidly changing world, we discover breakthrough solutions for better health.

Our research is focused within the areas of metabolic health/diabetes, environmental health, molecular targets and therapies, cell programming and repair, bioengineering, and computational health. We particularly excel in the fields of basic research, bioengineering, artificial intelligence, and technological development.

Through this research, we build the foundations for medical innovation. Together with our partners, we seek to accelerate the transfer of our research, so that laboratory ideas can reach society and improve people’s quality of life at the fastest rate possible.

This is what drives us. Why not join us and make a difference?

The Research Unit Environmental Simulation (EUS) (EUS twitter) focuses on the impact of environmental factors on the biosphere-atmosphere exchange through the simulation of diverse climatic conditions.

In the frame of the DFG-funded Research Unit “Plant Chemical Diversity” we will study in our subproject “Linking Populus nigra metabotypes to genetic variation and plant-herbivore interactions” the metabolic diversity across tissues under abiotic and biotic stresses aiming to create comprehensive metabolomic networks and understand the phenotypic chemical plasticity and its ecological importance.

The focus of the PhD position is to study the chemical composition of poplar genotypes in different plant tissues under stress and develop a metabolic atlas for this species. This will involve non-targeted and targeted metabolomics analysis using mass spectrometry and creation of metabolomic networks, experiments on automated plant phenotyping platforms and in climate chambers and visits to collaborating laboratories of the RU.

Prof. Matthias Tschöp (Dr. Med., Dr. hc.) CEO of Helmholtz Munich

We believe that excellent research requires a range of different perspectives. Diverse teams reach better solutions and are more innovative in their research topics.

Establishing our Diversity Management Strategy demonstrates our commitment to ensuring an appreciative company culture based on mutual respect. We are also implementing diversity-sensitive processes throughout our whole organization.

Your tasks

  • Performance of rhizotron & cuvette experiments
  • Non-invasive phenotyping of plant traits
  • Measurement of metabolomes by mass spectrometry (LS-MSMS)
  • VOCs analyisis by (PTR-MS & GC-MS)
  • Evaluation of metabolome data using multivariate statistics & machine learning approaches
  • Linking of metabolome data with ecological data

Your profile

  • University degree in biochemistry, biology, chemistry, analytical chemistry, or a similar professional training
  • Experience in mass spectrometry
  • Strong team spirit & willingness to work in an interdisciplinary and multicultural team
  • Knowledge of programming (R) and multivariate statistics is a plus
  • Knowledge of ecology is desirable



Since 2005, we hold the TOTAL E-QUALITY award for exemplary action in the sense of an equal-opportunity organizational culture.

Helmholtz Munich is actively committed to diversity and inclusion in practice and is sustainably committed to equality.

The Diversity Charter has set itself the goal of promoting diversity in the world of work. By signing the charter, we commit ourselves to create an appreciative working environment for all employees.


This position provides the opportunity for you to build specialist knowledge whilst developing key professional experience, both of which will help you to make strides in your scientific career.

Remuneration and social security benefits are based on the German Collective Wage Agreement for Public-Sector Employees at Federal Level (EG 13 50% TV EntgO Bund). In addition, there is also the possibility of receiving an allowance if the applicable conditions are met. The position has an (initial) fixed term of three years but may be extended under certain circumstances.

We are committed to promoting a culture of diversity and welcome applications from talented people regardless of gender, cultural background, nationality, ethnicity, sexual identity, physical abilities, religion or age. Qualified applicants with physical disabilities will be given preference. If you have obtained a university degree abroad, we will require further documents from you regarding the comparability of your degree. Please request the Statement of Comparability for Foreign Higher Education Qualifications as early as possible.


Interested in applying?

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Prof. Dr. Jörg-Peter Schnitzler,, who will be happy to help.

Your application should include

    We are Helmholtz Munich.


    How we promote your career?

    Read more
    Back to overview Online application