At the beginning of the 21st century,
biology is faced with the enormous task of understanding how
the information of the entire genome results in the biology
of the organism. Employing over 250 full-time staff (of whom
about 140 are research scientists) and training 80 PhD students,
the Nencki Institute is currently the largest non-university
biological research centre in Poland. The Institute is committed
to generating, disseminating, and preserving biological knowledge
in order to meet contemporary challenges of the Polish society.
High quality of externally funded research, excellent publication
record, and strong international links place the Nencki Institute
among the leading biological institutions of Central and Eastern
The research goals of the Nencki Institute
are to arrive at molecular, cellular and organismal explanations
of excitability, movement, development, memory, learning,
behaviour, ageing and death. All those tasks need to be both
intellectually satisfying and relevant to problems of human
Neurobiology and biochemistry represent
two main research areas of the Institute. Nencki Institute
is the only research centre in Poland, in which neurobiology
is thoroughly studied from the molecular to the organismal
level. Research projects in this field are carried out by
teams belonging to the Department of Neurophysiology (11 laboratories),
Department of Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology (8 laboratories),
as well as Department of Cellular Biochemistry (6 laboratories).
For the teams from the two latter departments neural tissue
and cells are the principal models, whereas in the Department
of Neurophysiology studies are also conducted on rodents,
cats, social insects, and humans.
Research in two biochemistry departments,
Department of Muscle Biochemistry (4 laboratories) and Department
od Cellular Biochemistry, is focused on structure and functional
properties of cytoskeletal and motor proteins, on regulation
of contractile processes, on biological membranes, bioenergetics
of cellular processes, metabolic regulation, signal transduction,
and regulation of gene expression.
In addition, Department of Cell Biology
(5 laboratories) and several other laboratories carry on studies
on signalling, plasma membrane dynamics, cell growth and differentiation,
cell motility, molecular mechanisms of cell excitability,
and ion channels of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells.
The Institute also places high emphasis
on education and training. We actively recruit the best PhD
candidates with the highest academic achievements, keen intellectual
curiosity, and the desire to excel professionally and personally.
Our staff provides them with a rigorous background in scientific
concepts, tools, and a hands-on learning environment characterized
by highly interactive laboratories. The best of the students,
after completing the PhD curriculum with honours and a successful
external postdoctoral stage, have an opportunity to return
to one of our scientific teams as assistant professors, or
to form a new team. New laboratories are created at the Institute
to facilitate recruitment of the best specialists in research
areas that are new and complementary to our current research
profile. The Nencki Institute is an equal opportunity employer
with full awareness of gender issues in scientific research
(women account for approximately 65% of the Institute's research
and administrative staff, including senior level positions).