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Bioinformatics based project - Determining the link between gut microbiome and blood pressure

School of Biological Sciences

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Dr Francine Marques Applications accepted all year round Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

A fully funded PhD scholarship is available for an Australian or international student through the School of Biological Sciences and Monash University. This scholarship is very competitive and cover living expenses and waive tuition fees. Please review the selection criteria below and fill in the form so we can assess if you would have a chance in securing the scholarship.

The vision of our laboratory is to find the molecular mechanisms behind blood pressure regulation (examples of our work can be seen at Marques et al., Circulation 2017; Marques et al., Nature Reviews Cardiology 2018). We take a systemic approach because blood pressure regulation is complex and fascinating. This is achieved by using the latest technology available, which includes detecting RNA molecules at the single-cell level using sequencing and imaging, developing new microRNA knockout models using CRISPR/Cas9 technology and sequencing gut microbes, all of that integrated with traditional techniques in the fields of physiology and cardiovascular imaging. We work in multi-disciplinary teams that reflect the complexity of the blood pressure regulation to facilitate advancing research and translating our findings.

We are looking for a student with an interest in translational research to work on a project that aims to study the role of gut microbes, fibre and short-chain fatty acids in the setting of blood pressure regulation. This project would be heavily based on bioinformatics, so someone with coding experience is essential.

We are a friendly, enthusiastic and international research team that offers intensive hands-on training, mentoring and networking opportunities. The successful applicant will be supervised and/or mentored by a team of world leaders, including the lab head Dr Francine Marques, and specialists in hypertension (Prof Geoff Head, Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute), heart failure (Prof David Kaye, Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute), gut microbiome (Prof Charles Mackay, Monash University) and others.

The successful candidate is someone who:
• Is a bright junior scientist who is highly motivated and hard-working, and work well in teams.
• Holds a first class honours’ or master’s degree (final mark >85%, equivalent to GPA >3.6) in biology, molecular biology, genetics, microbiology, bioinformatics or a related field, BUT EXPERIENCE IN CODING IS ESSENTIAL.
• Has excellent communication skills and proficiency in English are mandatory.
• Is able to start in 2019 or early 2020.
• Expertise in cardiovascular physiology or molecular biology/microbiology would be advantageous but is not essential.

Read more about our team at: https://www.marqueslab.com/

To be eligible for the scholarship you need to have:
-done a Bachelor degree with a first class honours year or a Bachelor degree with a master’s by research (not coursework) with score >85% (flexible for UK students due to lower % of students with higher scores - other countries GPA >3.6 is compulsory) - proof of proficiency in bioinformatics is essential
-completed a minimum of a 6 month research project DURING their honours or master’s degree (research experience outside the degree will not be considered towards the scholarship application)
-completed one of their degrees in English or satisfy the university language requirements (check here: https://www.monash.edu/graduate-research/faqs-and-resources/content/chapter-two/2-2)

Based on these criteria and your previous experience we will assess whether we will invite you for an interview. Due to the high volume of applications we apologise that we will only contact back (within a week of the application) those whom we deem eligible. This will be followed by an informal interview and reference check before proceeding to a full scholarship application.

Apply here: https://goo.gl/forms/aSR1wA7fBAisKsTj1 - applications sent by email only or the form below will NOT be considered

More about doing a PhD at Monash University:

The quality of our research and exceptional facilities are just two of the many reasons we’re consistently ranked in the top 100 universities in the world. The Monash Doctoral Program is a 3-year research-intensive course that involves some coursework directed for career development. In the Marques Laboratory, you are expected to do cutting edge research and develop independent projects, read a lot of papers and be on top of the research published in our field, write commentaries, reviews and research papers, perform experiments in the lab and present in conferences. In our lab you will receive plenty of training and advice on how to achieve all of the above and thrive!

We have received a large number of applications, so we apologise we will only get in touch with those we deem competitive to get a scholarship. This will be followed by an interview, reference check and then invitation to apply.

Funding Notes

A fully funded PhD scholarship is available for an Australian or international student through the School of Biological Sciences and Monash University. This scholarship cover living expenses and waive tuition fees. Please fill in form so we can assess if you would have a chance in securing a scholarship.
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