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Medical Research Council (MRC) Cancer and Genome Integrity PhD Programme

Medical Research Council (MRC) Cancer and Genome Integrity PhD Programme 2019

MRC Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit
University of Dundee, Scotland
Stipend £20,000 per annum tax-free

Defects in DNA replication or DNA repair can lead to mutations and other genomic alterations that give rise to cancers, and consequently tumours tend to have a high degree of genome instability. Understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in DNA replication and repair, therefore, may pave the way for new treatments for cancer. Furthermore, many of the frontline chemotherapy drugs used to treat cancer act by inducing DNA damage or perturbing DNA replication. Therefore, the efficacy of these therapies depends on our understanding of the mechanisms that cells use to sense and process DNA lesions and DNA replication defects.

The 4-year PhD programme has two main themes: DNA replication and DNA repair. Karim Labib’s lab studies the eukaryotic replisome that is assembled and disassembled during every cell cycle, to ensure that the chromosomes are duplicated just once. Karim’s group focuses on multiple ubiquitylation pathways that mediate replisome disassembly during S-phase and mitosis, preserving genome integrity in ways that are just starting to be unravelled. John Rouse’s lab focuses on the molecular mechanisms underlying the signaling and repair of DNA damage, especially those that perturb DNA replication, with emphasis on the control of these mechanisms by phosphorylation and ubiquitylation. John’s lab is particularly keen to understand how derailment of DNA repair causes disease, and in developing anti-tumour strategies based on inhibition of DNA repair.

We are looking for bright and enthusiastic young people to join our Cancer and Genome Integrity PhD Programme in 2019/2020. Our aim is to train the research leaders of tomorrow, and we provide support and training at every stage of the PhD, in a world class research institute that benefits from core funding from the MRC. We offer the option of two 4-month rotations in the first year, or alternatively students can join one lab directly for four years. Current projects can be found by clicking here. The stipend for our MRC studentships is £20,000 per annum tax-free, and our students can attend at least one international conference during the course of their PhD. You can see what some of our former PhD students are up to now by reading some of our “Alumni interviews”.

The School of Life Sciences at the University of Dundee is one of the leading European institutions for research in Life Sciences, and is currently ranked top by the UK government. The 2016 QS World University Rankings in Biological Sciences place Dundee 5th in the UK and 40th in the world as judged by ‘citations-per-paper’, one of the most widely recognized metrics of scientific excellence.

Application deadline: December 1st 2019
Interviews: January 2020

Please send a CV with contact details of three referees to [email protected] including a cover letter explaining your interest in our work


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