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Functional characterization of MelLec in immunity, Immunology - PhD (Funded)

University of Exeter - University of Exeter's MRC Centre for Medical Mycology

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Exeter
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: Home tuition fees plus an annual tax-free stipend of at least £15,609 for 4 years full-time
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 4th October 2021
Closes: 30th November 2021
Reference: 4190

Academic Supervisors:

Professor Gordon Brown, FRS, University of Exeter

Dr Janet Willment, University of Exeter

Project Description:

Our resistance to infection is critically dependent upon the ability of the immune system to recognise microbial invasion and induce protective responses. This recognition and the subsequent protective responses are achieved by molecules, called receptors, which are found on the surface of immune cells. One such family of receptors are the C-type lectin receptors, which we and others have shown to play a central role in protective immunity to fungal pathogens. Excitingly, we have identified a C-type lectin receptor called MelLec that recognises a novel fungal component, the pigment melanin. We have discovered that through its ability to recognise melanin, MelLec plays an important role in immune responses to the fungal pathogen, Aspergillus fumigatus (PMIDs: 29489751 & 34122436). The focus of this PhD project will be to mechanistically determine how MelLec mediates its cellular and immune functions.

The conditions for eligibility of home fees status are complex and you will need to seek advice if you have moved to or from the UK (or Republic of Ireland) within the past 3 years or have applied for settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme.

Students who pay international tuition fees are eligible to apply, but should note that the award will only provide payment for part of the international tuition fee and no stipend.

International applicants need to be aware that you will have to cover the cost of your student visa, healthcare surcharge and other costs of moving to the UK to do a PhD.

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