Technische Universität Dresden - Center for Advancing Electronics Dresden
The TU Dresden is one of eleven German universities that were identified as an “excellence university”. TUD has about 36.500 students and almost 5319 employees, 507 professors among them, and, thus, is the largest university in Saxony, today.
Having been committed to sciences and the engineering before the reunification of Germany, TU Dresden now is a multi-discipline university, also offering humanities and social sciences as well as medicine.
Research Associate / Postdoc
in Theoretical Biological Physics / Biological Image Analysis
(subject to personal qualification employees are remunerated according to salary group E 13 TV-L)
The Junior Research Group “Biological Algorithms” headed by PD Dr. Benjamin Friedrich (funded by the Heisenberg Programme of the DFG) affiliated with the Cluster of Excellence ‘Physics of Life’ (PoL) offers a position as Research Associate / Postdoc in Theoretical Biological Physics / Biological Image Analysis starting as soon as possible until 31.05.2022 with full funding by the Human Frontiers Science Program. The period of employment is governed by the Fixed Term Research Contracts Act (Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz - WissZeitVG). An extension is possible subject to the availability of additional funds.
About the project: Every striated muscle cell in our body contains highly regular myofibrils, whose active contraction drive all our voluntary movements. Each myofibril is a highly regular “biological crystal” built as a chain of sarcomere units, composed of regular arrangement of actin filaments and myosin molecular motors, linked together by gigantic titin springs. Alteration of this regular architecture are linked to disease states. Yet, the physical mechanisms driving the self-assembly of these myofibrils during development remain poorly understood.
In a theory-experiment collaboration with the experimental groups of Frank Schnorrer (IBDM, Marseilles) and O. Pourquie (HMSB, Boston), we are testing the hypothesis that active tension orchestrates sarcomere self-assembly. For the theory part, we develop agent-based as well as mean-field simulations of a nematic bundle of actin, myosin, and titin, which allows us to test alternative mechanisms of myofibril assembly in silico. For an early hypothesis of how actin and myosin filaments self-assemble into regular sarcomeric patterns by a combination of active forces and passive crosslinking, see [Friedrich et al. PLoS Computational Biology, 2012].