Job offer details

PhD student position in computational design of RNA molecules with new 3D structures Bujnicki group in IIMCB, Warsaw, Poland

PhD student position

in computational design of RNA molecules with new 3D structures

Bujnicki group in IIMCB, Warsaw, Poland


We are looking for a junior scientist, interested in software development, bioinformatics, molecular modeling and design, and motivated to develop a career in an interdisciplinary and international team.


Key information about us:

To have an idea of the working activity of the host group, check the website

We are an interdisciplinary team that combines basic science (to solve the mysteries of nature) and applied science (to make the discoveries practically useful). In our laboratory, software developers meet with experimental biologists, and high-throughput data analysis combines with sophisticated studies of individual biomacromolecules. We develop new computational methods, new tools for biotechnology, and molecules that will hopefully become drugs against diseases. Our goal is to understand the structure of RNA molecules, and design molecules that do not exist yet. We are also involved in efforts towards commercialization of our results.

We are one of the most successful RNA modeling teams in the world: see rankings of RNA Puzzles. Our recent focus and biggest successes are in computational and experimental analyses of RNA and protein-RNA complexes. For examples, see: Smietanski et al. Nature Commun 2014, Boniecki et al. Nucleic Acids Res 2015.

We are hosted by IIMCB (, the top-ranked (A+) Polish research institute in biology, with cutting-edge equipment and facilities, in particular for bioinformatics, experimental molecular and structural biology.
IIMCB also provides support for science commercialization, development of spin-off companies etc.

IIMCB is an equal opportunity employer and holds 'HR Excellence in Research' logo for the implementation of the provisions of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.


The project "Development of new methods for designing RNA molecules that fold into desired spatial structures and their use for development of new functional RNAs and for prediction of noncoding RNAs in transcriptome sequences" (PI: prof. Janusz Bujnicki) is carried out as the OPUS 2017/25/B/NZ2/01294 grant of the Polish National Science Center. The PhD student will be selected from candidates in an open competition, according to the procedure complying the rules for granting scholarships for young scientists in research projects funded by the National Science Centre (NCN Council Resolution No. 96/2016 dated. October 27, 2016 r.)

The goal of the project is to develop and test in practice a new method for designing RNA molecules with programmed structures and functions. You will be involved in collaborative work on software development (coding in C/C++ and in Python) and in computational design/modeling of RNA 3D structures. We provide opportunities for interdisciplinary collaborations within the team, in the institute (with software developers, molecular modelers, and experimentalists), as well as with international partners.



MSc in computer science, life sciences or related area (defended before the start of the work on the project)

Eligibility for PhD studies in Poland under the supervision of prof. Bujnicki

Documented experience in programming (Python and/or C/C++)
• Proactive approach to achieving tasks and objectives, good interpersonal skills, collaborative attitude

Experience in bioinformatics, molecular modeling etc. is advantageous, but not essential.

Priority will be given to candidates with expertise most relevant to the project and to the profile of the laboratory.


We offer:

PhD fellowship 3500 PLN/month,

Appointment starting between April and October 2018, funding guaranteed initially for 3 years, possible extension

Position with 100% focus on research (no teaching obligations)

Participation in courses, scientific training, support from peers, and academic mentoring

Benefits including reduced-rate for an individual medical care package and membership in MultiSport programme


How to apply:

We will collect applications until April 9th 2018

Apply now (or ask any questions you may have) to

In the subject include "PhD-OPUS-RNAbioinfo" and your first and last name.

Your application must be in English and should contain a CV, a motivation letter (What is your scientific dream and how do you want to fulfill it? What are your key strengths? Why do you want to work with us?), a description of your key achievements, and contacts to at least two potential referees, including at least one direct supervisor.

Please include the following statement in your application: "I hereby give consent for my personal data included in my application to be processed for the purposes of the recruitment process under the Personal Data Protection Act as of 29 August 1997, consolidated text: Journal of Laws 2016, item 922 as amended.”

Best candidate(s) may be given additional questions and tasks before the final interview.

The competition may be extended until a suitable candidate who fulfills all requirements is found.