PhD Studentship - Mechanistic Analysis of the Escherichia Coli Twin Arginine Translocase

Newcastle University - Faculty of Medical Sciences – Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences

Value of award

100% of UK/EU tuition fees paid and annual living expenses of £14,777 (full award). Successful international candidates will be required to make up the difference between the UK/EU fees and international fees.

Number of awards


Start date and duration

24 September 2018 for 3 years.

Application closing date

Applications will be considered until a suitable candidate is found.


Protein export is an essential feature of all living organisms. Secreted proteins allow bacteria to colonize their environments, to obtain energy and, in the case of pathogens, to cause disease. We study the export of proteins by the Tat (twin arginine transport) pathway.

Proteins are targeted to the Tat machinery by N-terminal signal peptides that contain an invariant twin arginine motif, and they are exported in a folded conformation (see

The project will build on our recent findings (e.g.; to investigate the Tat export mechanism in the model organism E. coli. A combination of molecular biology, genetic and biochemical approaches will be used to explore the interaction of substrate proteins with the Tat machinery and how this drives assembly of an active Tat translocase.


Newcastle University

Name of supervisor(s)

Professor Tracy Palmer

Eligibility Criteria

You must have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 Honours degree in biochemistry, microbiology or a related area. A further qualification such as an MSc or MRes may be advantageous.

This award is available to UK/EU and international applicants.

To study this course you need to meet the following English Language requirements IELTS 6.5 overall (with a minimum of 5.5 in all other sub-skills).

How to apply

You must apply through the University’s online postgraduate application system. To do this please ‘Create a new account’.

Only mandatory fields need to be completed. However, you will need to include the following information:

  • insert the programme code 8300F in the programme of study section 
  • select ‘PhD in the Faculty of Medical Sciences – Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences’ as the programme of study 
  • insert the studentship code CB142 in the studentship/partnership reference field 
  • attach a covering letter and CV. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote the studentship reference code CB142 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project 
  • attach degree transcripts and certificates and, if English is not your first language, a copy of your English language qualifications.


For further information please email Louise Campbell, Institute for Cell and Molecular Biosciences.

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Northern England