PhD position in Developmental Neurobiology

Grafik Jobangebot

Starting 1st November 2021,


available in the laboratory of Dr. Andreas Sagner at the Institute for Biochemistry (FAU Erlangen).



Proper development and function of the vertebrate nervous system requires the generation of distinct types of neurons, which need to be specified at the right place, time and number and then be correctly connected to each other. Recent estimates suggest that the vertebrate nervous system comprises several thousand molecularly and functionally distinct neuronal cell types. Our understanding of how this diversity is generated during development is still partial.

We study how a recently uncovered temporal patterning program, which depends on cohorts of transcription factors that are specific for early, intermediate, or late-born neurons, contributes to the establishment of neuronal diversity in the developing spinal cord. The main aims of the lab are to 1.) uncover the molecular signals and gene regulatory networks that control temporal patterning in the spinal cord; 2) decipher the molecular logic by which transcription factors defining different spatial and temporal neuronal identities jointly establish neuronal subtype-specific patterns of gene expression and 3.) delineate how temporal patterning of neurons in the embryo underlies neuronal diversity and connectivity in the adult spinal cord. To achieve this aim we use transgenic stem cell and mouse models and a wide repertoire of methods. These range from state-of-the-art molecular biology techniques such as CRISPR/Cas9 genome engineering, epigenomic profiling of transcription factor binding sites and histone modifications and single cell transcriptomics to in-vivo cell labelling and histological experiments.



We are looking for an enthusiastic, knowledge-driven student with an excellent Master’s degree in Molecular Medicine, Biology, Biochemistry or related fields who is interested in addressing fundamental questions at the intersection between developmental and neurobiology. As basic research lab, we particularly value curiosity, the will to explore and the ability to work independently and responsibly. No further specific prerequisites are required, although prior knowledge in areas related to the work of the lab, such as handling of mice, cultivation and differentiation of stem cells or bioinformatic analysis of single cell and epigenomic sequencing data could be advantageous.



  • Payment according to TV-L (E13 65%)
  • Application closes 01.09.2021
  • Possibility for association with the DFG-Research Training Group 2162 “Neurodevelopment and CNS vulnerability” and the graduate school of life-sciences Life@FAU


In case of interest

Please submit a letter of interest (max 1-2 pages), academic CV including transcript of records and publication list and arrange for a letter of reference to be directly send to For further information, please contact