Rhinovirus infections are the main cause of the common cold and a major cause of exacerbation of chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), leading to an acute worsening of symptoms. However, there is currently no vaccine or antiviral treatment against rhinoviruses and current treatments against asthma or COPD are poorly effective against rhinovirus-induced exacerbations.
To identify targets for the development of new treatments against rhinovirus-induced exacerbations in people with asthma or COPD, we need to better understand the molecular interactions between rhinovirus and their host cells. In particular, identifying host cell proteins that are essential for the replication of the virus or for the response of the host to the virus, and understanding the molecular mechanisms involved, would be important.
We recently identified by proteomics analysis several human proteins interacting with rhinovirus proteins in infected cells. The project will investigate the role of these host proteins in the replication of the virus or in the response of host cells to rhinovirus infection.
This offers an exciting opportunity to acquire and apply a diverse range of techniques (molecular/cell biology, biochemistry, virology…) and state-of-the art imaging and proteomics methods to elucidate the molecular pathogenesis of rhinovirus; thus contributing to the discovery of new treatment strategies for the most common infection of humans.
Candidates should have or expect to obtain a 2:1 or higher Honours degree or equivalent in a relevant biomedical or life sciences subject.
Candidates applying from countries where the first language is not English should produce evidence of their competence through a qualification such as IELTS or TOEFL score.
The minimum recommended score for the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Science is:
• IELTS score of 6.0 with not less than 5.5 in each of the four component elements of listening, reading, speaking and writing taken within the last 2 years;
• TOEFL score of 80+ (internet basted test), taken within the last 2 years, with minimum component scores of; Listening 17, Reading 18, Speaking 20, Writing 17);
• A valid Certificate of Proficiency in English grade A or B;
• A valid Certificate of Advanced English grade A; or
• A first or upper second class honours degree from a university based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or other suitably quality assured location in a country deemed by the UK Border Agency to be majority English speaking.
For a list of English Language qualifications also accepted by the School and University please see the following link: http://www.qub.ac.uk/International/International-students/Applying/English-language-requirements/#English
The English Language Unit (ELU) offers both pre-sessional and in-sessional courses in English for academic purposes and study skills. Courses vary in length and full information can be obtained from the ELU http://www.qub.ac.uk/tefl/