Graduate position: UStAndrews.ChordateEvolution
From the Evolution Directory (EvolDir) via Twitter.
Evolution of chordate regeneration mechanisms
The cephalochordate amphioxus is the basal-most chordate, and as such
shares many features with vertebrates including a notochord, segmented
musculature and a hollow nerve cord. It is therefore ideally placed for
understanding the evolution of vertebrate characters from an invertebrate
ancestor (Bertrand and Escrivā 2011). It is also emerging as a good
system for regeneration studies, since it can faithfully regenerate the
postanal tail with all its complex morphology (Somorjai et al 2012).
As part of an ongoing project to understand the genetic basis of
amphioxus tail regeneration, we have generated transcriptome data of
bud-stage blastemas and normal tails (generated by Dr Nori Satoh, OIST,
Japan). The first goal of this project will be to analyse commonalities
and differences between the two datasets. Interesting candidates will
then be analysed for expression during regeneration. A long-term aim of
the project is to determine gene function using knock-down techniques.
This project will contribute to the regeneration field by developing a
new model for regeneration biology that occupies a key position for
understanding the evoluton of chordate regeneration.
This appointment is a MASTS (Marine Alliance for Science & Technology for
Scotland) studentship, and the research will largely be conducted at the
University of St Andrews Scottish Oceans Institute (Scotland UK).
Applicants must be enthusiastic and ready to accept the challenge of
working with a new regeneration model system, ideally with relevant
experience in one or more of molecular biology, developmental biology,
regeneration research, transgenics/microinjection, cell culture, gene
sequence/transcriptome analysis and microscopy (further training will be
provided). The project will also involve a significant wet-lab component
and fieldwork. Informal enquiries should be sent to both co-supervisors
Dr Ildiko Somorjai (email@example.com) and Dr. Dave Ferrier
(firstname.lastname@example.org). Please send a CV and cover letter (max 1 page
each) outlining your goals and relevant experience. The deadline for
applications is July 31st, 2012.
Recent relevant references:
Bertrand S, Escrivā H. 2011. Evolutionary crossroads in developmental
biology: amphioxus. Development. 138(22):4819-30.
Somorjai IML, Somorjai RL, Garcia-Fernāndez J, Escrivā H. 2012.
Vertebrate-like regeneration in the invertebrate chordate amphioxus. PNAS.
Dr. Ildiko Somorjai, PhD Cantab.
Centre for Organismal Studies (COS)
University of Heidelberg
Im Neuenheimer Feld 230
phone: (+49) (0)6221 54 52 56
fax: (+49) (0)6221 54 56 78