Doctoral Researcher, Structural Biology and Drug Discovery

The University of Oulu is one of the largest universities in Finland, with approximately 15 000 students and 3 000 employees. We, at the University of Oulu, work as part of the international science community to produce new scientific information and science-based solutions. Our university's several specialized research and service units enable extensive and diverse development and career opportunities for experts in various fields. The University of Oulu Graduate School (UniOGS) provides the framework and conditions for high-quality, research-driven doctoral education at the University of Oulu, and field-specific doctoral training is provided by its multidisciplinary doctoral programs. For more information:

We have now an opening for two fixed-term, full-time

Doctoral researcher positions

in research projects headed by Professor Lari Lehtiö in the Protein and Structural Biology research unit. The doctoral studies are expected to be completed in four years.

Protein and structural biology is one of the three research focus areas of theFaculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine. The Faculty provides a dynamic research surrounding and cutting-edge research infrastructure services to academics and other users in Finland and abroad. It has about 190 employees (including doctoral researchers) of which about half are from outside of Finland.

The host research team also belongs to Biocenter Oulu (, which offers a high-level international multidisciplinary environment supplied with cutting-edge infrastructures. Under this framework, the Health and Biosciences Doctoral Program (HBS-DP) offers doctoral training in clinical medicine, biomedicine, biochemistry, molecular medicine, dentistry, health sciences, and medical technology. For more information:

Our team focuses on structure, function and selective inhibition of ADP-ribosyltransferases, also known as PARPs. These proteins are involved in signaling through ADP-ribosylation – a post-translational modification affecting protein stability, function, and interactions in multiple cellular pathways. Our goals are to discover and develop inhibitors targeting ADP-ribosyltransferases as well as ADP-ribosylhydrolases to be used as tools to study ADP-ribosylation events and also as potential anti-cancer and anti-viral drugs. We also study how the multidomain PARPs function by addressing several key questions in their oligomerization, protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions.

About the positions

The successful candidates will work on understanding PARP activation upon DNA damage, designing and developing assays suitable for high-throughput screening of inhibitors and use structural information for rational design to develop specific inhibitors. Protein X-ray crystallography is our main tool used to understand structure-activity relationships of compounds and a range of biochemical, structural and biophysical methods including single molecule techniques will be used to study PARPs function.You can find more information from these websites:
and Twitter:

Supervisor will be professor Lehtiö and the projects are focused on the discovery of small molecule inhibitors of human and virus macrodomains and on the protein-protein interaction inhibitors and activation of PARP enzymes. Additionally, the researchers are expected to contribute to other synergistic projects of the team.


You must hold a Master’s degree or an equivalent degree (e.g. licentiate) preferably in biochemistry or related fields. Degree must have been completed with good grades by 30.8.2022 or strong evidence for graduation during early Autumn 2022 must be demonstrated.

The positions are intended for an Early-Stage Researcher (ESR) who is defined as a researcher in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of their research activity, including the period of research training. You will be either starting your doctoral training or will have completed no more than two full years of training (adjusted for possible previous part-time status) at the time the positions are filled. The selected candidates will carry out their doctoral studies in the HBS-DP of the UniOGS and must meet the minimal requirements to receive doctoral study rights as defined in


The salary of the selected doctoral researchers will be initially set on levels 2 – 4 of the national salary scale for teaching and research staff of Finnish universities. In addition, a supplementary remuneration is given for personal achievement and performance (max. 50 %). In practice, the salary is roughly 2,300 – 3,000 € (before taxes) per month for an early-stage researcher, depending on the appointee’s qualifications and progress of the doctoral thesis.

The positions are filled for a maximum of four-year period. The employments begin on September 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter. A six-month trial period is applied in the positions.


Applications must be submitted using the electronic application form by July 31st, 2022 (23:59Finnish local time, EET), with the following attachments as three separate pdf files:

1       Complete CV containing contact information of at least two referees (Max. size limit of the attachment: 5 Mbytes) according to the guidelines of Finnish National Board on Integrity:

2       Motivation letter describing prior knowledge and research interests and career plans (1 – 2 pages; max. size limit of the attachment: 2 Mbytes)

3       Certificates/Diplomas: Scanned electronic copies of diplomas and transcripts of the records of relevant previous degrees. If the original documents are not in English, Finnish, or Swedish, each document must be accompanied by an official certified translation into English or Finnish. (Max. size limit of the attachment: 2 Mbytes)

Other relevant information

The eligible applicants fitting best in the research profile expected for the positions may be invited to an on-site or remote interview. All applicants will be notified when a decision is made concerning their application or the selection process is completed. Applications received by email will not be taken into consideration.

For further information:

Professor Lari Lehtiö, e-mail: lari.lehtio (at)

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