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Developmental responses and adaptation to abiotic stress for seed production in rapeseed


About the Project

Climate changes affect crop productivity, forest tree growth, and biodiversity. Heat is detrimental to seed production and seed quality. As much as high temperatures affect plant development and plant immunity, elevated temperatures might also accelerate fungal epidemics on crops and forest trees.
You will be part of a collaborative project with the Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO), CEITEC Nano, and the Czech company OSEVA. This project aims at developing non-invasive methods for seed quality screening with a specific focus on fungal infection and abiotic stress in rapeseed and Norway spruce seeds. Our research group at CEITEC MU works to characterize the responses to high temperatures of flowering rapeseed.
This PhD project will identify rapeseed genetic resources resilient to high temperatures, in consultation with OSEVA. Focus will be made on seed quality, composition of seed storage compounds, plant phenotyping in greenhouse growth conditions with various temperature settings.
The characterized lines will be further challenged for resilience to biotic stresses in collaboration with NIBIO. Methodical approaches include macroscopic and microscopic phenotyping analyses, biostatistics, seed quality assessment.

We are seeking: An enthusiastic and motivated student who would be interested to carry out his/her PhD research project in our team. The candidate should have MSc degree in the area of Life sciences. Experience in molecular biology/cell biology/plant culture/microscopy is a plus. English will be our communication language.
We offer: Ambitious laboratory facilities, young, international and dynamic work environment. Experience acquisition in a wide range of biological techniques and methods.

Keywords: Abiotic stresses, temperature stress, climate changes, seed quality, phenotyping, biostatistics, rapeseed

HOW TO APPLY: Register for this call using the registration form at and submit required documents to receive support with the preparation of the application and all formalities. Your application package will be forwarded to the supervisor for preliminary revision.
Applicants who wish to pursue a degree at the CEITEC PhD program must hold the equivalent of a Master’s degree (MSc) in a similar field (four- or five-year undergraduate degree). The application can be submitted before obtaining the Master’s degree; however, the applicant should obtain a degree within five months after the application deadline.

Funding Notes

Admission for studies, student registration for the full-time study programme and proper fulfilment of student duties constitute the student’s right to a regular scholarship of 22 000 CZK (850 EUR). Information is available at View Website

Living costs and other practicalities available at View Website


1. Mroue, S., Simeunovic, A., and Robert, H.S. (2017). Auxin production as an integrator of environmental cues for developmental growth regulation. J Exp Botany doi: 10.1093/jxb/erx259.
2. Ibañez, C. et al., 2017. Ambient temperature and genotype differentially affect developmental and phenotypic plasticity in Arabidopsis thaliana. BMC plant biology, 17(1), p.114.
3. Casal, J.J. & Balasubramanian, S., 2019. Thermomorphogenesis. Annual Review of Plant Biology, 70(1), pp.321–346.

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