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Ref2322: PhD Student (Balzarotti Lab)

The research group of Francisco Balzarotti at the Research Institute for Molecular Pathology (IMP) offers a position for highly motivated PhD students interested in the fields of super reso­lution microscopy and single molecule tracking.

Our Group

We develop novel optical methods and instrumentation for the observation of biological phenomena with the highest fidelity. We focus on schemes that require outstanding performance in terms of spa­tial and/or temporal resolution, such as super resolution fluorescence imaging and single-molecule tracking. By bringing together expertise in optics, statistics, labelling and photophysics, we develop solutions to transverse obstacles in biology and biophysics within a highly collaborative envi­ronment.

The Projects

The advent of Super Resolution Microscopy has un­locked the access to spatial resolutions beyond the diffraction limit of visible light (~250nm), becoming an invaluable tool for exploring the structure and function of biological processes. The recently introduced MINFLUX concept has pushed even further the possibilities of molecu­lar localization in terms of spatio-temporal resolution. Driven by these concepts, the successful candidates will develop instrumentation to fill current technological gaps, while answering concrete biological ques­tions in association with the rich and collaborative environment of the Vienna BioCenter.

The Candidates

The candidates should be curious, creative and excited about learning new topics and skills! Despite the emphasis on technology development within our group, a candidate with experience/knowledge/interest in biol­ogy will make a great match. This is the driving force of our environment at the Vienna BioCenter, where there is extensive exposure to diverse topics in biology.

Successful candidates should hold a MSc or equivalent degree in the fields of physics or engineer­ing.

The following aspects are desirable:

  • Theoretical and hands-on experience in optics
  • Experience in the field of super resolution microscopy
  • Experience in single-molecule assays, like single molecule tracking or optical tweezers
  • Programming proficiency in Py­thon, MATLAB, LabView, FPGA and/or GPU
  • Experience in electronics, e.g. circuitry, microcontrollers, high frequency/high voltage
  • Experience in statistics, stochastic processes and control theory

Our Environment

The Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) in Vienna is a basic biomedical research institute largely spon­sored by Boehringer Ingelheim. With over 200 scientists from 40 coun­tries, the IMP is committed to scientific discovery of fundamental mo­lecular and cellular mechanisms underlying complex biological phe­nomena. The IMP is located at the Vienna BioCenter, one of Europe’s most dynamic life science hubs with more than 3,000 employees from 80 countries in six research institutions, two universities, and two dozen biotech companies.


Graduate students are associated to the Vienna BioCenter PhD program, please follow instructions here. Nevertheless, if you are interested in joining our team, please also send a direct application irrespective of the PhD program deadline (motivation letterCVcontact details for references) by email to francisco.balzarotti[at]

Next deadline: February 2024