Post-doctoral position on maternal haploid inducers

Gepubliceerd op
19 januari 2023
Locatie Wageningen
Einddatum ma 20 februari 2023
Reageren Klik hier om te reageren

We are looking for

Are you looking for a post-doctoral position that will allow you to identify new pollen mutants that promote egg cell parthenogenesis in plants? Are you a molecular geneticist with interest in (plant) developmental biology? Then this post-doc vacancy may be of interest to you.
Your Job
You will participate in the TKI Horticulture and Starting Materials (TKI Tuinbouw en Uitgangsmaterialen) project Maternal Haploid Induction that is financially supported by a public-private partnership between the Dutch government and international plant breeding companies. The project aims to identify new maternal haploid inducers in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana (arabidopsis). Doubled haploid (DH) production is a widely-applied biotechnology technique with numerous applications in plant breeding. Haploid plants are usually produced in vitro from cultured egg or pollen cells, but can also be produced in planta through seed. In one of these approaches, maternal haploid induction, pollinating female plants with pollen from so-called haploid inducer lines induces the egg cell to develop into an embryo in the absence of fertilization. The recent identification of mutant genes underlying maternal haploid induction in maize and their proven utility for inducing haploids in diverse crops has opened up new possibilities for the production of DH lines.
In this project you will identify new maternal haploid inducers in arabidopsis using mutagenesis screening and mapping by sequencing, characterize the function of the identified genes, and evaluate their utility for haploid induction in selected crops. 

We ask

We are looking for a post-doc with a proven track record in performing mutagenesis-based screens, mapping by sequencing and basic molecular and cell biology techniques, all with an affinity for (plant) developmental biology.

Additionally, we are looking for someone who:

  • is able to work independently, but also enjoys working in a larger team;
  • has excellent English oral and written communication skills and data management skills;
  • would like to develop their project management skills by co-supervising a part-time technician working on the same project.

We offer

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:

  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • a strong focus on vitality; you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
Depending on your experience, we offer a competitive gross salary of between € 2.960,- and € 4.670,- for a full-time working week of 38 hours, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale 10). Initially, we offer you a one-year contract, which will be extended by 1.5 years upon satisfactory performance.

Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.
You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the “Best University” in the Netherlands for the 18th consecutive time.

Coming from abroad
Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees.
Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family.

Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research's International Community page contains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, and schooling. For instance under the "30% ruling", certain categories of international staff can receive a tax exemption on approximately 30% of their gross salary.

More information

Do you require more information?
For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Kim Boutilier (
For more information about the procedure, please contact

Would you like to apply?
You can apply directly using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website, which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval.
This vacancy will be listed up to and including February 20, 2023.

Equal opportunities
Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR. For more information please go to our inclusivity page. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.

We are

Wageningen University & Research
The mission of Wageningen University & Research is “To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life”. Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment. With its roughly 30 branches, 7,200 employees (6,400 fte) and 13,200 students and over 150.000 participants to WUR’s Life Long Learning, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. The unique Wageningen approach lies in its integrated approach to issues and the collaboration between different disciplines.

Read the 5 reasons why your future colleagues enjoy working at WUR and watch this video to get an idea of our green campus!

You will work here
You will be supervised by Dr. Kim Boutilier. Her research is focussed on understanding the molecular-genetic basis for totipotency (plant regeneration through embryogenesis). Her group studies different types of in vitro totipotency, including embryogenesis from haploid male and female gametophytes (pollen and embryo sac) and embryogenesis from vegetative tissues (somatic embryogenesis), as well as different types of seed-based embryogenesis systems (zygotic embryogenesis, egg cell parthenogenesis, maternal haploid induction). Understanding the role of embryo-identity transcription factors and chromatin modifying proteins in promoting and repressing these developmental programs is a major aspect of her research.

This research is embedded in the Plant Developmental Systems group of Wageningen University and Research (WUR). The focus of the this group is on the molecular regulation of major developmental processes, like flowering, floral organ and fruit development, plant architecture, and embryogenesis, with a major emphasis on the role of transcription factors in these processes. The group carries out fundamental research on model organisms that has potential impact for implementation in crops. A multidisciplinary approach is followed that makes use of molecular and cell biology, plant physiology, chemical biology, bioinformatics and various high-throughput 'omics' technologies. The team consist of a very social and highly motivated group of staff researchers, technicians, and (international) PhD students/post-docs.
You will also be part of the Experimental Plant Sciences Graduate School, a Dutch interuniversity graduate school that helps train PhD candidates and postdocs to become self-reliant researchers by organizing courses, seminars, symposia, meetings, workshops and summer schools.

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing this vacancy in your network is appreciated.

Solliciteer nu / Apply now