The German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) is a unique non-university research center which is dedicated to the subject dementia and all its areas, as well as other neurodegenerative diseases. The center compasses the full spectrum of fundamental research through population sciences to health care research. The DZNE stands for excellence in research and science management, translation of scientific results into practice, interdisciplinarity and internationalization. It is a research center within the Helmholtz Organization of German research centers. With over 1000 employees from 55 nations, spread over 10 sites, the DZNE is one of the national and international leading research centers in its research field. 

Postdoctoral Researcher Climate Change and Health (m/w/d)

Code: 1706/2020/1

Climate change majorly affects many aspects of life. To help develop tenable solutions for global warming and to evaluate the impact of climate change on health, the Helmholtz Association has established a large-scale cross-disciplinary research program “Helmholtz-Initiative Climate Adaptation and Mitigation” (HI-CAM). As part of this initiative, we will collaborate with other health-related research institutes across Germany on analyzing the impact of extreme weather on cardiovascular, metabolic and cognitive functions and mental health. In that context, we are searching for a Postdoctoral Researcher Climate Change and Health (f/m/d).

The aim of this project is to investigate the impact of ambient temperature and humidity exposure on health. The research will use available geocoded daily temperature and humidity exposure data and link those to individual participant data from the Rhineland Study, a deeply phenotyped population-based cohort in Bonn, Germany. The study will include more than 20,000 people aged 30 years and over, run for decades, and emphasizes brain-related outcomes.

Your tasks

Using extensive existing data on physiologic parameters (incl. metabolomic data; lipidomic data; serum virus antibody titers; microbiome data; cytokine profiles), you will derive biomarkers, physiological patterns & mechanistic pathways that are influenced by ambient temperatures and humidity. Next, you will evaluate the potential health impact of those biomarker profiles & pathways by investigating their relationship with health phenotypes, in particular structural & functional markers of brain health (brain MR data, cognition data). You will analyze the data and prepare manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals and maintain contact with our external collaborators. Besides, we expect you to engage in and actively contribute to overall activities related to the conduct and further general development of the Rhineland Study.


Candidates preferably have a PhD in epidemiology, medicine, applied statistics, computational biology or other relevant discipline, and experience in the field of high-dimensional data analysis. Demonstrated interest in quantitative research, strong analytical skills, ability for independent and critical thinking, and excellent communication and writing skills in the English language are a prerequisite. Working experience in epidemiological research or large-scale observational studies is desirable. A track record of publishing high quality scientific papers is a sine qua non.

We offer

  • Interesting and challenging work on the forefront of health research in a highly interdisciplinary and international team. Common language at work is English
  • We actively encourage and support our employees’ personal development and growth
  • The fulltime position is initially limited to two years with the possibility of extension
  • Employment, payment and social benefits are determined by the Public Sector Collective Agreement (TVöD-Bund).




Contact details

Dr. Antonio Schmandke

Working hours


Contract length

2 years, extension possible

Payment, social benefits

according to TVöD Bund

Application deadline

January 31st, 2020

You will obtain special skills and knowledge for your scientific qualification during your activities at DZNE. The DZNE is an equal opportunity employer. It is committed to employing disabled individuals and especially encourages them to apply.