Positions for Research Scientists in Vascular Morphogenesis (Team Leader: Li-Kun Phng, PhD.)

nov 22, 2017 update

Research Field

Our lab, Laboratory for Vascular Morphogenesis, aims to unravel fundamental mechanisms that regulate endothelial cell dynamics and coordination during angiogenesis and blood vessel remodelling. We use zebrafish as the model organism to observe and understand the process of blood vessel morphogenesis, and employ a variety methods such as fluorescent live imaging at high temporal and spatial resolution, advanced fluorescent microscopy techniques, genetics and chemical biology to elucidate the mechanical and molecular mechanisms of vascular morphogenesis.



Gebala V, Collins R, Geudens I, Phng LK* and Gerhardt H*. Blood flow drives lumen formation by inverse membrane blebbing during angiogenesis in vivo. NATURE CELL BIOLOGY 18 (4), 443 – 451 (2016). *equal contribution


Phng LK, Gebala V, Bentley K, Philippides A, Wacker A, Mathivet T, Sauteur L, Stanchi S, HG Belting, Affolter M, Gerhardt H. Formin-mediated actin polymerization at endothelial junctions is required for vessel lumen formation and stabilization. DEVELOPMENTAL CELL 32, 123 -132 (2015).

Job title, Job description

Research scientist (postdoctoral fellow): one person
We are currently seeking a post-doctoral fellow to investigate the interplay between haemodynamic forces and endothelial mechanoresponse. Interested candidates should have a background in bioengineering or cell/developmental biology with experience in computer simulations. Prior knowledge in imaging techniques and image analyses will be advantageous. The successful candidate must be highly motivated, independent, creative and be willing to collaborate with cross-interdisciplinary scientists.


Applicants have to be awarded a PhD degree by the commencement date.

Work location and environment

Our lab is fully equipped to perform scientific research at the international level and is ideal for scientists who wish to conduct excellent research in a multicultural environment. The working language of the lab is English.
RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology (Port Island, Kobe, Japan)
Address: Minatojima-minamimachi 2-2-3, Chuo-ku, Kobe, Hyogo, 650-0047, Japan

Salary and benefits

1  A one-year fixed-term employment contract, renewable based on evaluation, to a maximum of the end of the fiscal year (March 31) in which the employee completes 7 years of employment.
2  RIKEN may adjust the above maximum period of renewability based on a) the employee’s abilities, work load at the time of contract completion, performance and work attitude and b) the continuation of the employee’s center, laboratory or project and RIKEN’s management situation and budget at the time. In principle, employment contracts will not be renewed for individuals older than 65 years.
3  The employee’s period of fixed-term employment cannot exceed 10 years from the initial date of hire (or 10 years from April 1, 2013 for fixed-term employees already at RIKEN prior to this date).

Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. Commuting and housing allowances will be provided. Social insurance will be applied. Mandatory membership in the RIKEN Mutual Benefit Society (RIKEN Kyosaikai). Days off include public holidays, New Year’s holidays (Dec. 29 – Jan 3), and RIKEN Foundation Day.
 These and other provisions are in accordance with RIKEN regulations.
RIKEN is promoting a Gender Equity Program by taking various measures to create a workplace where both men and women are able to give full rein to their talents and abilities. When applicants are judged to be equally qualified on the basis of fair and impartial criteria, women applicants will be given preference.

Also, eligible for an exemption from repayment for category 1 scholarship loans provided by the Japan Student Services Organization before fiscal year 2003, and eligible applying for the MEXT Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Kakenhi).

Application and required documents

1. The application package should include 1) A cover letter that states, prior research achievements, your scientific interests, reasons for applying and a brief proposition about research project in our lab. 2) The curriculum vitae that contains a list of publications.

2. Separately from above documents, please provide two references. References should be obtained from your current supervisor and a supervisor for your PhD project. (If a reference from a person mentioned above is not available, a reference from someone who knows your research abilities well will be accepted.) These letters should be directly sent to Kobe Human Resources Section from referees by email or by post.

All documents should be prepared in English. 

[Deadline] Application will be closed when the position is filled.

Handling Personal Data

Handling of Personal Data: All private data sent to RIKEN in application for employment is handled in strict confidentiality, and such data is not utilized for any other purpose or disclosed to any third party. Application documents will not be returned.

Selection process

Selection will be made based on application screening and interviews.

Start of Employment

Commencing date is from April 2018. Negotiable.

Contact Information

For further inquiries, please email:
Li-Kun Phng, PhD.
Email: likun.phng[at]

Application package and recommendation letters should be sent (by email or mail) to:
Kobe Human Resources Section, RIKEN Kobe branch, Kobe Administrative Division
2-2-3 Minatojima-minamimachi, Chuo-ku, Kobe, Hyogo 650-0047, Japan
Email: kobe-jobs[at]