Institute of Tropical Medicine Antwerp

Professor of Experimental Parasitology (Leishmania)

2024-06-01 (Europe/Brussels)
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Department of Biomedical Sciences 


The Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM) in Antwerp, Belgium, aims at the advancement and spread of science that contributes to infectious diseases understanding, medicine and public health, with a global focus on low and middle income countries.. ITM conducts scientific research, delivers advanced education and provides medical, scientific and societal expert services. The ITM is an open and international campus where staff, students and researchers work on new international health challenges. 

Scientific expertise on Leishmania and leishmaniases is a worldwide recognized stronghold of ITM, covering a broad research portfolio - from fundamental to translational, applied and operational research - that overarches the three scientific departments of ITM (ITM Leishmania Centre). Within the Department of Biomedical Sciences (DBS), current research on Leishmania in the Molecular Parasitology Unit is conducted around 2 main axes: (i) basic experimental research on the parasite’s adaptive skills (such as the role of genome instability in adaptation to environmental stress, the molecular processes controlling quiescence and the mechanisms of drug resistance and tolerance) and (ii) applied research on the evolutionary genetics of Leishmania in natural context and the molecular epidemiology of leishmaniasis. 

DBS is launching a new Experimental Parasitology Unit to be led by a newly recruited Professor (all levels), to ensure the continuation of the ongoing state-of-the-art research on Leishmania. Besides developing new lines of basic experimental research on the adaptation mechanisms of Leishmania and related parasites, the appointed Professor will build-up on the currently running and successful experimental research lines of the Molecular Parasitology Unit. The Professor of Experimental Parasitology will work independently. 

The position of Professor of Experimental Parasitology encompasses the classical academic triad of research, education and service delivery. The candidate is expected to develop an innovative and internationally competitive research program, to contribute to educational activities in the field of molecular and experimental parasitology at postgraduate, Master and PhD level, as well as in specialized short courses at ITM, and to provide expert advice to national and international bodies/stakeholders in the field of experimental parasitology and leishmania(ses) research. 

We welcome candidates from any nationality. 

Your role 

  • Develop novel basic research lines on parasite adaptation mechanisms broadening the experimental research portfolio, on Leishmania and related parasites. 
  • Expand the current experimental research lines on the molecular mechanisms of Leishmania adaptation to different environments encountered during their life cycle and/or during exposure to chemotherapy, in collaboration with the Molecular Parasitology Unit. 
  • Develop, apply and disseminate novel state-of-the-art methodologies for molecular analysis of parasites in in vitro as well as in vivo conditions; this includes single cell ‘omic approaches and parasite genetic engineering. 
  • Establish and foster strong partnerships with internal and external partners for translation of the acquired basic knowledge on Leishmania biology into biomedical applications. 
  • Collaborate with units across ITM to develop synergistic research lines on leishmaniasis and vector-borne Protozoan diseases. 
  • Acquire competitive research funding and build up international reputation and visibility. 
  • Build and lead a team of scientific and technical staff. 
  • Provide teaching and hands-on training in the field of molecular and experimental parasitology at postgraduate, Master and PhD level, as well as in specialized short courses at ITM, supervise and mentor MSc and PhD students. 
  • Manage the Leishmania cryobank and contribute to the management of other shared technology platforms like the sand fly insectarium and the single cell biology platform. 
  • Provide expert advice to national and international bodies/stakeholders in the field of experimental parasitology and leishmania(ses) research. 
  • Promote and contribute to the strategic vision of the department and institutional policy and contribute to relevant ITM committees. 
  • You report to the Head of the Department of Biomedical Sciences. 


  • Molecular biologist with demonstrated track record in experimental parasitology, ‘omics, parasite genetics and Leishmania research.
  • A PhD degree in biology, veterinary sciences, biomedical sciences, medicine, or equivalent field. 
  • Excellent skills in the development of molecular methods. 
  • Track record in successful collaborative research with other disciplines. 
  • A proven track record of successful grant writing and PhD supervision. 
  • Experience in academic teaching and training in (experimental) parasitology. 
  • Excellent communication skills and respectful people management skills. 
  • Fluent in English. Active knowledge of Dutch is desirable. If you do not have these skills, willingness to acquire a working level of Dutch is requested. 
  • Genuine alignment with ITM values. 

We offer you 

  • A full-time appointment. Depending on your record and qualifications, you will be appointed to or tenured in one of the grades of the senior academic staff: assistant professor, associate professor, professor or full professor. 
  • A salary package depending on your profile and professional experience, and supplementary benefits, such as private pension scheme, meal voucher subscription and reimbursement of transport. For candidates eligible for expat status under Belgian fiscal law, relocation, cost of living and other allowances can apply. 
  • Attractive research starting grant to cover initial personnel, working and equipment costs. 
  • An immigration and relocation assistance package.
  • A collegial research environment and mentorship with attention to work-life balance and individual growth and development. 
  • Based in the vibrant city of Antwerp, Belgium. 

Excited about this position? 

For more information about this position, please contact HR (

Apply via the link on the ITM’s website before June 1st, 2024. 

We ask you to fill in the ITM’s application letter to add and motivation letter. Additionally, you can add your CV. 

The ITM is committed to building a diverse, equitable and inclusive institute. We strive for excellence and relevance, integrity, sustainability, persistence and fairness. Your assignment contributes to our mission. We value human dignity and diversity, academic creativity and a critical spirit, solidarity and cooperation, and the well-being of employees, students, patients and clients. 

Excited about this position? 

For more information about this position, please contact HR ( 

Apply via the link below before June 1st, 2024. 

We ask you to add you CV and motivation letter.

Informatie over de vacature

Professor of Experimental Parasitology (Leishmania)
Nationalestraat 155 Antwerpen, België
Uiterste sollicitatiedatum
2024-06-01 23:59 (Europe/Brussels)
2024-06-01 23:59 (CET)
Soort functie
Baan opslaan

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