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 (f/m/d)

Code: 1765/2020/1

The group of Dr. Daniele Bano studies the interplay between epigenetics, mitochondrial function and metabolism in aging and neurodegenerative diseases. We have described molecular regulators of mitochondrial activity that influence cellular physiology and animal survival (Gioran A. et al, 2014; Meyer K. et al, 2015; Troulinaki K. et al, 2018; Wischhof L. et al, 2018; Gioran A. et al, 2019). In collaboration with other research groups, we have provided evidence on novel mitochondria-dependent molecular cascades that control metabolism and degenerative processes (Sendoel A. et al, 2014; Sellin J. et al, 2018; Arnoux I. et al, 2018; Theurey P. et al, 2019; Cavaliere F. et al, 2019). In invertebrates as well as in higher organisms, we have investigated epigenetic factors that promote longevity and neuronal maintenance (Piazzesi A. et al, 2016; Wischhof L. et al, 2017). Additional current studies, including EU-funded transnational collaborations (e.g., ETN, IMI), focus on signaling pathways and metabolic programs that contribute to cell vulnerability due to mitochondrial lesions and aggregate-prone proteins.

Your tasks

We are seeking a highly motivated and science-driven postdoctoral researcher with interest in epigenetics.

  1. We wish to explore the contribution of the replication-independent histone variant H3.3 to longevity. We have previously shown that H3.3 deficiency alters the survival of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (Piazzesi A. et al, 2016). New lines of evidence have unveiled how H3.3 loading onto chromatin controls metabolism in mitochondrial mutant nematodes (Piazzesi A. et al, submitted ms). Our next goal is to screen for H3.3-modifiers and H3.3-binding partners that influence age-related processes and lifespan-extending signaling pathways in nematodes as well as in cells.
  2. We have studied the importance of the ATP-dependent chromatin remodeling SWI/SNF/BAF complex to cognition (Wischhof L. et al, 2017). As part of our current work, we have investigated the epigenetic processes that prime metabolic changes during cell lineage commitment. Building up from our recent findings (Wischhof L. et al, in preparation), we will screen for chromatin associated factors that cause metabolic dysfunction in cells and animals expressing an aberrant SWI/SNF/BAF complex.


Projects encompass a variety of methods and approaches, including genetics, confocal laser microscopy, immunocytochemistry/ immunohistochemistry, cellular biology (e.g., mouse-derived cells and human iPSCs), biochemistry and tissue preparation from transgenic mice. Previous experience with iPSCs and/or handling of transgenic mice (including FELASA certificate) and/or Caenorhabditis elegans is a plus. The successful candidate is also a team player.

We offer

  • An interesting and challenging task in a research center that works on the future topics of health research
  • An international environment characterized by a strong focus on science and research
  • A high potential for the individual development of our employees
  • Targeted personnel development
  • Employment, payment and social benefits are determined by the Public Sector Collective Agreement (Tarifvertrag für den öffentlichen Dienst – TVöD Bund).

Interviews will take place between April and May 2020. The position is available starting from June 2020.




Contact details

Dr. Daniele Bano

Working hours


Contract length

2 years, extension possible

Payment, social benefits

according to TVöD Bund

Application deadline

March 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.