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Researchers Coronavirus - Antiviral Drug Development

Are you looking for an exciting position as scientist in the coronavirus research? Are you familiar with biochemical techniques and/or drug design? Then this might be an interesting position for you. We are looking for three researchers to contribute to our coronavirus research projects!

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Albinusdreef, Leiden, Zuid-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
36 uur
€ 5226 per maand


The SARS-coronavirus-2 pandemic has changed the world and showed us that we need to be better prepared for virus outbreaks, also by having broad-spectrum antiviral drugs ready to be used. The Department of Molecular Virology is identifying such coronavirus inhibitors in close collaboration with (inter)national academic and industrial partner organizations. The screening of compound libraries and specifically targeted compounds is performed using a combination of cell culture models for infection or in vitro assays, by detailed structure-function studies, and by further improvement of the original compounds. As a researcher, you will study the SARS-coronavirus-2 and related coronaviruses to establish the broad-spectrum efficacy of new virus inhibitors. This research will in part be performed at Bio Safety Level-3 ,for which you will receive in-house training within a highly experienced and dynamic team. As a direct spin-off from these projects on virus inhibitors, we expect to acquire new insight into the molecular details of coronavirus replication and coronavirus-host interactions. Mechanism-of-action studies will be applied to characterize the principles of virus inhibition and how to optimize the inhibitory activity of drug candidates. To do so, you will work not only with the intact virus, but also with individual viral proteins, for example by developing in vitro assays or interaction studies. Sometimes you will perform these studies on your own, sometimes within a team of other scientists or research technicians.

In short 

·       You will contribute to better preparedness for future virus outbreaks

·       You will study SARS-coronavirus-2 and related coronaviruses to identify or develop new broad-spectrum virus inhibitors

·       Furthermore, we aim to enhance our understanding of coronavirus replication and coronavirus-host interactions

·       You will do part of your work work in a Bio Safety Level-3 laboratory



You are a highly motivated and experimentally talented scientist, with or without prior postdoctoral experience. You have a profound interest in translational biomedical research and up-to-date experience with biochemical, molecular and cell-biology techniques is required. You have experience with recombinant DNA technology. Proven experience with eukaryotic cell culture or working in BSL-2/BSL-3 laboratories give you an important advantage. If needed, you are willing to engage in the mandatory internal training program to obtain a license for working in a BSL-3 laboratory. Our research is interdisciplinary (in collaboration with structural biologists and chemists, among others) and is carried out with leading European partners according to a tightly organized plan. International teamwork is an absolute requirement. You communicate effortlessly in English, both orally and in writing. You are accurate, independent and not afraid of (a little) scientific competition. You are also proactive, strive for the highest quality, and like to contribute to organizing your own working environment in which progress, job satisfaction and safety must come together. When you apply to these positions as a postdoc, then we expect you to publish in high-impact scientific journals and to present at international conferences.


You will be employed on the basis of 36 hours per week. Appointment is for two year, with an extension of two years in the same project. Your salary is based on your education and experience and is a maximum of  € 5,226  gross per month for a full time position (scale 11 in the Collective Labour Agreement for University Hospitals).

Additional information

Appointment is for two years, with an extension of two years in the same project.  

Look here for our website.

Contact details Dr. Martijn van Hemert, project leader Medical Microbiology, telephone +31 (0) 71 526 67 93; Prof. Eric Snijder, professor of molecular virology, Department of Medical Microbiology, telephone +31 (0) 71 526 16 52.