Postdoctoral Research Assistant (Modelling of Biofilm)

University of Dundee - Molecular Microbiology

An exciting opportunity for a mathematical modeller/ computational physicist to work in a multidisciplinary team on bacterial biofilms in one of Europe’s strongest life sciences research environments.

Bacterial biofilms have a profound significance in both in infections and in biotechnological applications.

A major award has been made by the UK science agency BBSRC (the Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council) to a team led by Professor Nicola Stanley-Wall that has been carefully assembled to combine skills in molecular microbiology and biofilm formation rheology, optical imaging, protein self-assembly, biopolymers, mathematical modelling, and carbohydrate chemistry that will lead to a complete quantitative description of a bacterial biofilm.

The successful applicant for this specific post will work with Prof Stanley-Wall and Prof Fordyce Davidson (renowned for his work in modelling microbial systems) to develop an enhanced understanding of the physico-mechanical properties of the biofilm matrix through a combination of mathematical modelling and laboratory experiments. The applicant will work in collaboration with the other researchers in the consortium to place this information into an overarching model of biofilm structure, function and dynamics.

A background in mathematical modelling using a range of computational techniques is essential and candidates with experience in modelling mechanical properties of soft matter are particularly well-suited. Experience in conducting laboratory experiments would be ideal but not necessary. However, a willingness to learn and engage across disciplines is essential and relevant training will be provided. 

The successful candidate will have a PhD in a related discipline.

This position is available for 3 years in the first instance.

More information about the Divisions of Molecular Microbiology (Prof Stanley-Wall) and Mathematics (Prof Davidson) and University of Dundee can be found in the following websites:

A few facts about The University of Dundee:

  • The School of Life Sciences was the top-rated university biology department in the UK in the 2014 national Research Excellence Framework.
  • The School of Life Sciences has over 900 research and support staff from 59 countries and external funding in excess of £40 million per year.
  • Dundee has twice been named ‘the best place to work in Europe’ in a poll of scientists conducted by The Scientist magazine.
  • The School of Life Sciences has outstanding laboratory and technological infrastructure.
  • Mathematics at University of Dundee the top rated unit in Scotland and 8th in UK in the 2014 national Research Excellence Framework.
  • Mathematics has a long-established internationally leading reputation in mathematical biology and has well-established links with the School of Life Sciences.
  • Dundee, set on the east coast of Scotland, lies in an area of outstanding natural beauty, including large sandy beaches and challenging hills. It has a high-standard, but relatively low-cost, of living.

Appointment as a Postdoctoral Research Assistant on the Grade 7 salary scale is dependent upon you having been awarded a PhD. An appointment may be considered if you are shortly expected to be awarded a PhD. The initial appointment will be made as a Research Assistant on the Training Grade 7 salary scale (Spinal Point 28, £30,175).

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