PhD position - Microbiome & Aging research

Leibniz Institute on Aging – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI)
Dönertaş Research Group


The Leibniz Graduate School on Aging and Age-Related Diseases (LGSA) is a joint program of the Leibniz Institute on Aging – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) and the Friedrich Schiller University (FSU) in Jena. The School calls for applications for a PhD position on computational modelling and machine learning algorithms to study host-microbiome interactions during aging. The position will be available in January 2023.

The Leibniz Graduate School on Aging and Age-Related Diseases (LGSA) belongs to the Leibniz Association - a non-university research organization equivalent to the Max Planck Society and the Helmholtz Association.

The new research group of Dr. Melike Dönertas at the Leibniz Institute on Aging - Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) is part of the DFG-funded Collaborative Research Center on Predictability in Evolution (SFB1310). The group is funded by the Carl-Zeiss-Stiftung. Through the institute and network of collaborations, the group has access to state-of-art animal facilities, equipment for high-throughput data generation, and expertise for experimental validation of computational models. The group is establishing an advanced computational infrastructure with CPU and GPU servers and has access to exceptional core-facility support.

The overall focus will be the development and application of computational frameworks to study host-microbe interactions, with a particular focus on age series and longitudinal datasets. The candidate:
• will work on a project that may span predictive, ecological, or causal modelling in microbiome-host interactions. Depending on the candidate’s experience level it is possible to start with a predefined project or to develop new projects together with the PI.
• will be expected to assume a significant role in the writing of publications.
• will be expected to work harmoniously with other computational and experimental biologists in the lab and institute to develop collaborative projects.


Eligible are students that have obtained, or that will obtain within half a year, an academic degree comparable to the master degree or diploma in in computational biology, bioinformatics, computer science, biology or related fields with excellent marks. Further requirements are:
• Programming experience, particularly desirable in R or Python
• Experience/interest in analysis of high-throughput sequencing data, microbial genomics, ecological modelling or population genetics
• Genuine interest in pursuing an interdisciplinary project
• Experience with machine learning and deep learning algorithms is not required but will be preferred
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English

Start date

January 01, 2023

How to Apply

Applications are through the Leibniz Graduate School on Aging and Age-Related Diseases Program:

Further information on the Leibniz Graduate School on Aging and Age Related Diseases (LGSA) can be found at

For the first step, please acquaint yourself with the application procedure on our website and fill in the application form in our online system.

Deadline for submission is September 10, 2022.


Melike Dönertaş