Electrical signals are known to arise in plants and fungi, but their role and potential as an engineering tool has not been fully explored. In recent work, we and others have shown that electrical signals also arise in microbial systems, with impacts on their colonisation and stress tolerance. Most recently, we have shown that a particular plant-colonizing fungus can also engage in auxotrophic interactions with bacteria and displays possible electrical signals during its growth. In this project, you will (i) further quantify these signals, (ii) decipher their mechanistic basis, and (iii) asses their role in plant-fungi and fungi-bacteria interactions. Following this, you will endeavour using external electrical signals to manipulate these interactions and behaviour of individual species. This work will be a collaboration between Soyer, Asally, Schaefer, and Polin groups, which are all part of the Warwick Integrative Synthetic Biology Centre (WISB).
The ideal candidate should have a working experience in biophysics, biochemistry, molecular cell biology, engineering, experimental physics, or similar quantitative discipline. Familiarity with basic microbiological/biochemical experimental techniques (such as microbial cultivation, biological sample preparation, and extraction), as well as quantitative analytic techniques (such as image analysis, mathematical data analysis, and basic modelling) are essential. Experience working with microfluidic systems and fluorescence microscopy would be highly desirable.
Please see here for further particulars and application details. For specific questions, you can also get in touch directly with Prof. Soyer.
We have a 3-yrs PhD studentship open to EU and UK applicants. The specific project for this position is being developed, but in general we are looking for candidate with a strong motivation to undertake independent research and a background in biology, physics, chemistry, mathematics, engineering, or computer science. Candidates with cross disciplinary backgrounds and experiences are particularly encouraged to apply. For specific questions, please get in touch directly with Prof. Soyer.
We are part of several Centres for Doctoral Training (CDT), through which we offer specific projects: 1. CDT in synthetic biology, SynBioCDT. For this program, no specific projects are advertised externally. Students apply to the program and then select a PhD project at the end of year 1. See program website for general application info. 2. Midland Integrative Biology CDT, MIBTP. This year we are offering the following project under this program; Designing biofunctional materials. 3. Ecology and evolution CDT, CENTA. This year we are offering the following project under this program; Synthetic cyanobacterial mats .
We are actively looking for postdoctoral researchers to join the lab. We are particularly interested in projects that combine applied synthetic biology approaches with our interest in evolutionary systems biology and could support fellowship applications in these directions (see fellowships provided by various sources such as EPSRC, Royal Society, and Wellcome Trust). To discuss please get in touch with Orkun Soyer with a CV and cover letter detailing your interests: