The Faculty of Biology of

Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań

is looking for

6 PhD students

to participate in research projects of the international PhD program of

KNOW “RNA Research Centre in Poznań”

 

About KNOW

The KNOW program is funded by Polish government to promote research at the best Polish research centers. The acronym KNOW stands for Leading National Research Centers (pl. Krajowe Naukowe Ośrodki Wiodące). The consortium „RNA Research Centre in Poznań” formed by the Faculty of Biology and the Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry was awarded the KNOW status in May 2014 (information on the webpage of Polish Ministry of Science and Education, and on the webpage of Adam Mickiewicz University ). There are only two research centers in Poland awarded with KNOW status in the field of biological sciences.

About research projects of the KNOW PhD program

The KNOW RNA Research Centre in Poznań is looking for candidates to participate in research projects of the international PhD program (student scholarships in these projects are 3.000 PLN/month).The short descriptions of the six research projects are listed below, with more details in the linked documents.

  1. The role of splicing in posttranscriptional microRNA gene (MIR) expression regulation in Arabidopsis thaliana”. This project concerns molecular biology and biotechnology of plants. The PhD student will be involved in studies on biogenesis of microRNAs. These short RNA molecules regulate plant adaptation to stress conditions, such as drought or high temperature, which are an important problem in agriculture because of the climate change (detailed description of the project [link]).
  2. Mechanisms of microRNA activity and expression changes in myotonic dystrophy”. Myotonic dystrophy (DM) is an inherited, multisystemic human disease that is caused by accumulation of toxic RNA. The PhD student will study the global miRNA expression changes in patients biopsy materials and in model systems including DM mouse models and some cell-based models using powerful ultra-high-throughput sequencing Illumina Hi-Seq system (detailed description of the project [link]).
  3. Characterization of the type I IFN-induced miRNA transcriptome and identification of novel miRNA genes, their ISG-targets and antiviral potential”. This project aims at providing evidence for the existence of a miRNA-dependent regulatory circuit in the Type I Interferon (IFN-I) antiviral response in human cells. The PhD student will study the IFN-I-induced miRNA transcriptome and chromatin interactions to identify novel miRNA genes, their IFN-stimulated gene (ISG)-targets and their potential antiviral functions (detailed description of the project [link]).
  4. Identification of tRNA and tRNA-like encoding genes”. This project concerns bioinformatical analysis of genomic sequences. In recent years new functions associated with tRNA molecules have been recognized, which are important for gene regulation, for example during viral infections. The aim of the project is to identify genomic sequences possessing certain tRNA-like features in the available genomes of prokaryotic, eukaryotic and viral origin (detailed description of the project [link]).
  5. Functions of long non-coding RNAs through RNA:RNA interactions”. This project concerns bioinformatical and experimental analysis of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), which constitute an abundant class of transcripts in animals and plants. The PhD student will be involved in a comprehensive, large-scale bioinformatics study, complemented with in vivo experiments on selected candidates (detailed description of the project [link]).
  6. Evolving artificial gene networks inspired by RNA world biochemistry”. This project concerns biologically inspired computation, which is a discipline of science and engineering that aims to understand and build complex systems using computational models based on the design principles found in nature. The PhD student will be involved in designing and building software that he/she will then use to evolve and analyse artificial genetic networks (detailed description of the project [link]).

How to apply

Applications should consist of a cover letter and a CV, including a list of grades in college (and their average). A copy of the Master of Sciences diploma or its equivalent should be included. If the candidate will soon graduate, then information about the planned graduation date can be provided, which should be confirmed by the thesis advisor. In the application the candidates should specify, to which project they apply. If more than one project is of interest, then a list of 3 projects in their preferred order should be provided. Also, the name and contact information of a potential referee should be enclosed. The applications should be send to rnaschool@amu.edu.pl by January 15th. In case of further inquiries, please, contact us at the same e-mail address.

In assessing the candidates the following will be considered: the average of grades in college, scientific interests and achievements (scholarships, conferences, papers, etc.), research experience, international experience, and a good command of English. The preferred candidates will be the college graduates in the fields of molecular biology, biotechnology, bioinformatics, or related, depending on the specific requirements of the projects (see above).

Selected candidates will be invited for an interview, which may be in person or by Skype. Candidates selected for the interview will be asked to give a presentation in English concerning their previous research experience.

Faculty of Biology of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań

The Faculty of Biology is located in the modern building of Collegium Biologicum at the Morasko campus in Poznań. Its researchers have at their disposal several well-equipped research facilities. The research at the Faculty is funded by grants from European Union and from national agencies, such as National Science Centre, and Foundation for Polish Science. At present, the Faculty employs more than 200 researchers and 120 PhD students.