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PhD Studentship: Exploiting Human Gut Microbiome in Mucus to Combat Pathogens

University of East Anglia - Quadram Institute Bioscience

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Norwich
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students, International Students
Funding amount: See advert details
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 25th November 2021
Closes: 17th January 2022
Reference: JUGE_Q22MMB

This PhD studentship provides an exciting opportunity for the successful candidate to investigate gut symbiont-pathogen interactions at the mucosal surface and acquire advanced skills in both in silico and in vivo approaches.

The human body harbours a diverse and dense population of commensal bacteria which exert key functions in terms of human health. However, the development of microbiome-targeted therapies to restore human health is currently hampered by a lack of mechanistic understanding of bacterial metabolism at the strain and niche level therefore limiting targeted approaches to achieve a clinically-desired effect. This work will harness mechanisms of adaptation of key human gut symbionts to the gut intestinal wall, focusing on bacterial mucin glycan metabolism as novel strategies to limit pathogen infection.

The PhD student will join a dynamic multidisciplinary team at the Quadram Institute Bioscience and receive mentoring and training in advanced experimental models and bioinformatics tools. Through this PhD studentship, the student will acquire expertise in microbiology, glycobiology and metagenomics, as well as general computational and in vivo skills.

The student will benefit from the established network of international collaborations of the supervisory team in this research area. Training will embrace research practice and theory, management, communication (to scientific and lay audiences), intellectual property, teamwork and technical writing. The student will present their work to internal seminars and to relevant international meetings on the Microbiome. The student will be encouraged to participate into outreach activities and innovative competitions.

The Microbes, Microbiomes and Bioinformatics (MMB) Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) is open to UK and international candidates with an undergraduate degree relevant to the scope of the programme for entry in October 2022 and offers postgraduates the opportunity to undertake a 4-year PhD research project funded by the UKRI Medical Research Council to advance the training of students in microbiology, with an emphasis on microbial bioinformatics.

This project has been shortlisted for funding by the MMB DTP programme. Interviews for shortlisted candidates will take place on Tuesday 15 or Wednesday 16 February 2022.

This MMB DTP is committed to equality, diversity, widening participation and inclusion in all areas of the programme. We encourage enquiries and applications from all sections of the community, regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, and transgender status. We value an aptitude for computer-based analysis, curiosity, and independence of thought, plus a commitment to work across the boundaries between the laboratory and bioinformatics to deliver high-impact research. We welcome applicants from low- and middle-income countries.

For information on eligibility and how to apply: https://www.uea.ac.uk/research/research-with-us/postgraduate-research/latest-phds-and-research-studentships/partnerships-in-doctoral-training

Primary Supervisor :  Prof Nathalie Juge (QIB)

Start date: October 2022

For more information on this project, please visit http://www.uea.ac.uk

This project is awarded with a 4-year MMB DTP PhD studentship, which includes support for a maintenance stipend, provided over four years, full tuition fees and research and training costs.

Studentship funding will not normally cover costs associated with visa or health surcharges, or additional costs associated with entry to, and living in the UK.

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