Degree: BS, MS, PhD
Nationality: International Students
Application deadlines: Open
All animals originate from a single cell – the zygote – that develops into a multicellular organism during embryogenesis. How is embryogenesis controlled? And how do embryonic processes change over time to generate the many animal forms we see today? My lab investigates these fundamental questions using marine invertebrate animals exhibiting a unique, yet widespread, mode of development named spiral cleavage (e.g., snails and earthworms).
In this project, you will investigate how RNA binding proteins (RBPs) control the earliest steps of animal embryogenesis. These proteins are crucial in connecting RNAs the mother provides in the egg to the cytoskeleton of the zygote and the first embryonic cells. In this way, RBPs distribute maternal RNAs in the embryo to control the earliest steps of development. You will ask three major questions: How did RBPs evolve in animals? How do RBPs distribute during early spiral cleavage? and what are the roles of RBPs?
You will rigorously answer these questions by combining state-of-the-art experimental and computation approaches, in a unique academic and collaborative environment.
- You will have access to large transcriptomic and genomic databases, and in-house live organisms to fuel your investigation.
- You will gain experience in molecular techniques (gene expression, protein localisation, microscopy) and bioinformatics (molecular evolution, RNA-seq analyses).
- You will be encouraged to develop your own ideas and hypotheses.
Applications are invited from outstanding candidates with or expecting to receive a first or upper-second class honours degree in an area relevant to the project. A Masters degree is desirable, but not essential.
- molecular biology
- developmental and cellular biology
- computational and evolutionary biology
Applicants from outside of the UK are required to provide evidence of their English language ability.
- For further info contact Chema at [email protected]