PhD Student: Protein and Nucleic Acid Molecular Modelling (f/m/x)

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Job Description

Takeda’s Gene Therapy New Technologies and Innovation team is looking for talented and highly motivated candidates for pursuing a PhD research program, in which the student will develop computational model simulations of topological changes on proteins and DNA strains.

Virus-like particles are nanoscale structures made up of assembled viral proteins that can be used in the gene therapy field as carrier of genetic material to treat or prevent genetic disorders. These VLPs can be bioengineered to improve particle tropism or avoid immune response in patients.

The increasing number of engineered VLP variants brings with it new challenges in both, pharmaceutical production and purification due to potential changes on VLPs behavior along the process. Molecular simulation techniques can help to better understand the impact of such modifications on the production process allowing the application of the most appropriate technology during the production of VLPs.


The candidate will use computational molecular simulation techniques to improve understanding on VLP Protein interactions with DNA and selected resins used in product purification systems. This will allow us identifying factors determinant for protein stability and aggregation and devise strategies to improve productivity and purity. In particular, the student will work on, but not limited to:

  • Identification of hydrophobic patches and polar/non-polar sites
  • Protein stability based on single-point mutations
  • Interaction with selected resins
  • Investigate the underlying mechanisms, with an emphasis on virus-like particles and DNA
  • Establish ML/AI-based predictors for protein stability, and aggregation.
  • Publication of at least two papers on selected topics in peer-reviewed journals and/or conferences
  • Collaboration with internal and cross-functional teams and academic researchers

Our requirements

  • Master’s degree in Chemistry, Biology or related disciplines with excellent computational chemistry and mathematical skills
  • Experience in molecular modeling of protein and/or DNA structures, preferred
  • Strong curiosity on exploring data, molecular simulation and visualization skills
  • Ability to clearly communicate ideas and knowledge
  • Ability to work in an interdisciplinary team and pursue goals in a focused way
  • Solid skills in R and Python
  • Excellent command of German and English

At Takeda, we are transforming the pharmaceutical industry through our R&D-driven market leadership and being a values-led company. To do this, we empower our people to realize their potential through life-changing work. Takeda encourages and supports its employees by trainings, job rotations and mentoring. A balanced work - life ratio (recognition for work and family, company kindergarten) and numerous benefits (fitness center, cafeteria, etc.) complete our profile as a top employer.

We foster an inclusive, collaborative workplace, in which our global teams are united by an unwavering commitment to deliver Better Health and a Brighter Future to people around the world. Gender, age, skin color, background or sexual orientation play no role in this as we actively promote diversity. We equally address people with disabilities. In the course of a recruitment process which is as free of barriers as possible, we encourage you to mention all relevant information in this context in your application.

Motivated employees must be remunerated appropriately. The minimum salary for this important and responsible position is € 1.597,22 gross per month (full time, collective wage agreement for the chemical industry). The actual remuneration package will be guided by your professional experience and your qualifications, so increased payment is possible.


AUT - Orth an der Donau

Worker Type


Worker Sub-Type

Fixed Term (Fixed Term)

Time Type

Full time


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