Postdoctoral scholarship, 2 years, in Plant Developmental Biology: Umeå Plant Science Centre (UPSC) is one of the strongest research environments for basic plant research in Europe. Research at UPSC covers a wide range of disciplines in plant biology including ecology, genetics, physiology, biochemistry, cell biology and molecular biology.

The postdoctoral scholarship is going to be placed at the Department of Plant Physiology, which is part of Umeå Plant Science Centre. Our common goal is to understand the ability of plants to adapt and acclimate to a changing world.

We are looking for a highly motivated candidate for the project “How does the ERF115 gene control the cytokinin machinery to repress adventitious root formation in Arabidopsis?” in Professor Catherine Bellini’s research group. The scholarship refers to full-time studies for two years with a starting date of 1st  September 2023 or according to agreement.

Project description:

Plants display a unique regenerative capacity which is widely exploited in modern agriculture, where elite genotypes are vegetatively propagated through stem cuttings. A critical point for successful propagation entails the development of adventitious roots (AR).

This is a post-embryonic de novo organogenesis program that enables plants to clonally propagate and adapt to the surrounding environment. Adventitious root initiation (ARI) is under the control of interconnected transcriptional and hormonal networks, but the underlying genetic and molecular bases orchestrating these networks have for long remained unclear.

We used the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana to decipher the molecular mechanisms controlling ARI. We identified several transcription regulators integrating auxin, jasmonate and cytokinin signalling pathways. We lately identified three transcription factors from the ETHYLEN RESPONSE FACTOR family (ERF113, ERF114 and ERF115) that act downstream of JA and redundantly modulate the cytokinin machinery to repress AR initiation.

During the proposed project we propose to go a step further to better understand the role of these transcription factors and identify the downstream targets involved in the repression of AR initiation. We will use an integrative approach including genetics, molecular genetics and biology, protein biochemistry and microscopy.


To be eligible as a postdoctoral fellow, a completed doctoral degree or a foreign degree deemed equivalent to a doctoral degree is required. This eligibility requirement must be met at the latest at the time when the decision on scholarship recipients is made.

Priority should be given to candidates who completed their doctoral degree, according to what is stipulated in the paragraph above, no later than three (3) years prior. If there are special reasons, candidates who completed their doctoral degree prior to that may also be eligible.

Special reasons include absence due to illness, parental leave, appointments of trust in trade union organizations, military service, or similar circumstances, as well as clinical practice or other forms of appointment/assignment relevant to the subject area.

The successful candidate will have a PhD degree, or equivalent, in Plant genetics or Plant molecular or Plant Developmental Biology.

Strong experience in plant genetics, standard molecular biology techniques, plant physiology and developmental biology is required. Very good English oral and writing skills are required

Good knowledge of cell biology and confocal microscopy would be appreciated. The postdoctoral scholar is expected to have good social skills and the ability to function well both independently as well as in a team. We value creativity, and the ability to communicate and take initiative.


The application should contain:

  1. A personal letter, max 2 pages, that describes your qualifications, research interests, and motivation for the application.
  2. CV with full publication list
  3. Verified copy of doctoral degree certificate or documentation that clarifies when the degree of doctor is expected to be obtained.
  4. Verified copies of other diplomas, list of completed academic courses and grades,
  5. Copy of doctoral thesis,
  6. Contact information of two referees, submitted during a possible interview.
  7. Other documents wished to be claimed.

Your complete application, marked with reference number FS 2.1.6-1000-23, must be submitted as a pdf-document to (state the reference number as subject) at latest 2023-05-31.

Further information can be obtained from Pr. Catherine Bellini ( We look forward to receiving your application!

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