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(BBSRC DTP) Understanding and predicting evolutionary change in HIV


Project Description

Our overall aim is to understand viral evolution, and the limitations on evolution that arise from the viral genome, proteome and structure-function relationships. We will study HIV as this virus evolves very rapidly and is well characterised in terms of its molecular biology. This constraint-based perspective will draw extensively on our combined expertise in molecular evolution, RNA structure and protein structure analysis. Constraints on viral change to be investigated include: functional and regulatory regions, RNA secondary structure, regions identified in susceptibility/escape from the immune response and, fundamentally, constraints imposed by protein structure. To maintain an infection HIV’s genome must, at all times, have the ability to code for functional proteins. Thus, the sequence space that HIV can navigate to evade either the immune system or drug therapy will inevitably be limited. It is the extent of this effect, for the different regions of HIV’s genome, that we will investigate. Specifically we will identify, and quantify, the limits of viral change. Our ultimate aim is to define the possible evolutionary pathways that the virus may take, and quantify their prevalence.

https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/simon.lovell.html
https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/catherine.walton.html
https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/sam.griffiths-jones.html

Entry Requirements:
Applications are invited from UK/EU nationals only. Applicants must have obtained, or be about to obtain, at least an upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject.

Funding Notes

This project is to be funded under the BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnership. If you are interested in this project, please make direct contact with the Principal Supervisor to arrange to discuss the project further as soon as possible. You MUST also submit an online application form - full details on how to apply can be found on the BBSRC DTP website View Website

As an equal opportunities institution we welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and transgender status. All appointments are made on merit.

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