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Two PhD Positions to work in a European Training Network on Combatting Antimicrobial Resistance (CARTNET)

We are looking for two enthusiastic Masters students with a relevant educational background, to work on two topics: (1). Development of new antibiotics targeting histidine kinases regulating virulence mechanisms. The person will work in an ...

7 maanden geleden

Arbeidsvoorwaarden

Standplaats:
Bornsesteeg, Wageningen, Gelderland
Dienstverband:
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 - 38 uur
Opleidingsniveau:
WO

Functieomschrijving

We are looking for two enthusiastic Masters students with a relevant educational background, to work on two topics: (1). Development of new antibiotics targeting histidine kinases regulating virulence mechanisms. The person will work in an international team with 3 other PhD students using a structure-based drug approach to improve the potency and selectivity of several small molecule inhibitors. The research involves: (i) selecting kinase targets involved in virulence and testing their enzymatic inhibition by newly discovered inhibitors, (ii) demonstrating selective target inhibition in live bacteria, (iii) testing therapeutic potential for antibiotic resistant bacterial pathogens and (iv) testing for potential host cell toxicity. (2). Microbiota as a source of new antimicrobials and colonisation resistance against Streptococcus suis infections. In complex biological systems, small molecules often mediate microbe-microbe and microbe-host interactions. The research builds on recent results showing that specific bacterial strains in the tonsil and upper respiratory microbiota possess biosynthetic gene clusters that produce inhibitors of pathogenic S. suis, which occupies the same ecological niche. A culturomics approach will be combined with a culture-dependent robotic screens to identify commensals producing peptide or small molecule inhibitors of S. suis. Genome sequencing of antimicrobial producing isolates and purification / mass-spectrometry will be used to identify and structurally characterise novel antimicrobial compounds. Commensals antagonising a broad range of S. suis strains will be tested for their capacity to colonise and prevent colonisation of pigs by S. suis in the vulnerable weaning period.

Functie-eisen

  • Relevant Bachelor level experience in microbiology, molecular biology, biochemistry
  • A Masters degree, with relevant practical experience (e.g. host-pathogen interactions, molecular microbiology or microbiota studies).
  • A professional, reliable and organised method of working.
  • Good communication skills and being able to maintain effective working relationships
  • Good level of English (spoken and written).
  • Conditions for mobility of Researchers in Initial Training Networks funded by the Horizon2020 programme. In this case: Researchers can be of any nationality but must have resided or carried out their main activity outside of the Netherlands for more than 24 months in the 3 years immediately prior to their recruitment.

Conditions

We offer a full-time appointment (1.0 fte, 38 hours/week) for 4 years. Salary ranges from € 2222,- (gross) in the first year to € 2840,- (gross) in the fourth year based on full-time employment. We not only offer a competitive salary, but also a good pension of the ABP Pension Fund.

Additional information

For more information about this position, please send an email to Prof. Jerry Wells office.hmi@wur.nl
For more information about the contractual aspects, please contact Mieke van Laar, Senior Human Resources Advisor, telephone number +31 317 484 224 (mieke.vanlaar@wur.nl).

Interested?
Applications have to be submitted before January 15th 2018 via the Wageningen UR online application system.

Bedrijfsomschrijving

The positions are in the Host-Microbe Interactomics (HMI) Group comprising 28 employees. Research of the HMI group ranges from work on the molecular mechanisms of diseases caused by pathogenic bacteria, to the interactions between pathogenic and beneficial bacteria and their human or animal hosts. The group, combines expertise in cell biology, immunology, microbiology and functional genomics to further our understanding of the molecular interactions occurring in the cross-talk between microbes and their hosts.

Wageningen University and Research delivers a substantial contribution to the quality of life. Within our domain, healthy food and living environment, we search for answers to issues affecting society and health. Every day, at WUR, 6,500 people work on 'the quality of life', turning ideas into reality.