Luis Pedro Coelho on building a research group in China

EMBARK PI Luis Pedro Coelho recently wrote a perspective piece in Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology on starting up a research group in China and the specific and general problems he and other young PIs are facing. Well worth a read if you are curious on scientific diversity, and it also highlights a few of the challenges with large international collaborations, just in terms of sheer administration!

Coronavirus-related setbacks

Unfortunately, the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is impacting some of the EMBARK communications and outreach as well, and I regret to inform you that today’s meeting with on NordicMappingAMR arranged by the Swedish Medical Products Agency where we would have presented and discussed EMBARK has been cancelled and postponed until after the summer.

Similarly, the workshop and seminar on monitoring of antibiotic resistance in the environment organized by Resistomap and others that was to take place in late April in Helsinki, and where EMBARK was going to be presented, has also been postponed until August.

Finally, the team is discussing how to best proceed with e.g. sampling strategies in the time of lockdowns and travel restrictions. We are still working on this, but at this point this only looks like it will delay portions of the program, and not have major impacts on the research activities. This analysis may of course change depending on how the COVID-19 outbreak develops.

Open Postdoc Position Coelho Lab

The Coelho lab is hiring a postdoc to work with understand antimicrobial resistance trends in public metagenome databases directly connected to the EMBARK program. The work is mostly computational, but there can also be some field and lab work (collecting samples).

As all EMBARK positions, this postdoc project will be performed n collaboration with the rest of the EMBARK team, so if your current skill set doesn’t include all of this, but you are interested in the position, then do apply! This position is open until being filled, so send your application as soon as possible.

The lab looks for a candidate with a strong background (including graduate work) in either computational biology or microbiology. If you feel that you are the right person for this position, you can apply hereTo apply: send an email to with your CV (preferably without a photo) and one representative publication. Later in the process, you will be asked for two reference letters, but they are not necessary for the initial application.

More information is available here:

Open postdoc position Bengtsson-Palme lab

The Bengtsson-Palme lab is hiring a postdoc to work with environmental monitoring of antimicrobial resistance, directly connected to the EMBARK program. The postdoc will work with different aspects of establishing a baseline for background antibiotic resistance in the environment, standardization of monitoring protocols and development of methods to detect emerging resistance threats. The project will involve work with environmental sampling, DNA extractions, bacterial culturing and generation of large-scale DNA sequence data. In terms of bioinformatic analyses, the project will encompass analysis of next-generation sequence data, genome-resolved metagenomics, short-read assembly and network analysis.

The lab looks for a skilled bioinformatician, preferably with experience of experimental laboratory work. If you feel that you are the right person for this position, you can apply hereMore information is also available here. The deadline for applications is January 3.