Postdocs/Ph.D. Candidates (f/m/d) in Population-Based MRI Analysis


German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE)


Bonn, Germany

Principal Investigator

Antonio Schmandke



Within the area of population health sciences, the DZNE studies determinants and biomarkers of normal and pathological mental and physical health function over the adult life course, with a special emphasis on neurodegenerative diseases and aging. The research is primarily based on the Rhineland Study, a prospective population-based cohort study that will run for decades. Brain imaging is an essential part of the center's data collection and prominent in its research. All eligible study participants undergo an advanced 1h MRI protocol at each examination. The core protocol acquires state-of-the-art anatomical, functional and structural connectivity data in the whole brain with high isotropic resolution. A “free protocol” with varying sequences addresses additional research questions in subgroups. DZNE already has brain imaging data from thousands of participants, data collection is ongoing. The successful candidate will work with an interdisciplinary team of image analyzers, IT experts, epidemiologists and other data scientists to build the relevant image analysis pipelines and perform further feature extraction and data analysis. The research is led by Monique M.B. Breteler, Director of Population Health Sciences, and conducted in close collaboration with the MR Image Analysis group of Martin Reuter and the MR Physics group of Tony Stöcker.

The center is looking for enthusiastic and ambitious researchers to join us within this area of MR image analysis. We are specifically looking for candidates to cover the following domains:

  • Functional Image Analysis. Primary tasks focus on building and applying the pipelines for rsfMRI data.
  • Structural Image Analysis. Primary tasks consist of multi-modal structural MR analysis (T1, T2, FLAIR, QSM).


Besides building and applying the relevant imaging analysis pipelines, the successful candidate will analyse data, prepare manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals, and actively participate in national and international conferences.

Postdocs are further expected to supervise graduate students and, depending on level of expertise, will be offered the opportunity to develop and lead their own research projects as it fit within the general research interests of our group.

DZNE offers:

Interesting and challenging work on the forefront of health research in a highly interdisciplinary and international team. Common language at work is English.

The Ph.D. position will be integrated into the Bonn International Graduate School of Clinical and Population Science. Extensive further training options exist and will be provided as needed. The position is initially limited to three years with the possibility of extension. Employment, payment and social benefits are consistent with those at other research institutes.

The Postdoc position is initially for two years with the possibility of extension. Employment, payment and social benefits are determined by the Public Sector Collective Agreement (TVöD-Bund).

The professional qualification of early career researchers is of great importance for DZNE. Besides special offers for career development and support, the DZNE also provides researchers career opportunities in form of junior research groups or internal career paths to obtain scientific independence.


Candidates should have an excellent degree in neuroimaging, cognitive neuroscience, biomedical engineering, computer science, applied mathematics/physics, or a related field and a strong research background in MRI image analysis. They are further expected to have experience with existing tools for MRI image analysis and relevant programming experience (MATLAB, Python, C/C++, R, unix shell scripts). Working experience with large-scale neuroimaging data processing in epidemiological research or large-scale clinical studies is highly desirable. Demonstrable interest in empirical quantitative research, strong analytical skills, ability for independent and critical thinking, and excellent communication and writing skills in the English language are prerequisites.