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EASTBIO Investigating the role of the circadian clock in antiviral defence

  • Full or part time
    Dr Attila Molnar
  • Application Deadline
    Sunday, January 05, 2020
  • Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

Second Supervisor: Dr Andrew Love Hutton Institute

Circadian rhythm is an approximately 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living organisms, which is driven by the circadian clock (1). Its function in responding to external abiotic cues and stresses is relatively well characterised. In contrast, very little is known about the role of the circadian clock in controlling biotic stresses such as virus attack. An early report indicated that the necrotic lesion response to several plant viruses is enhanced during the day compared to the night (2). However, this study did not investigate the role of the circadian clock in plant-virus interactions. The proposed project will examine the effect of the circadian rhythm on virus infections and explore the underlying molecular mechanisms including long-distance signalling pathways (3).

Our project will provide the framework to develop core research skills as well as excellent cross-disciplinary research training, including skills in communication and public engagement. The student will benefit from the shared resources and expertise of two leading UK research institutes – namely the University of Edinburgh and The James Hutton Institute.

Funding Notes

The “Visit Website” button will take you to our Online Application checklist. Complete each step and download the checklist which will provide a list of funding options and guide you through the application process. Follow the instructions on the EASTBIO website (you will be directed here from our application checklist), ensuring you upload an EASTBIO application form and transcripts to your application, and ticking the box to request references. Your referees should upload their references using the EASTBIO reference form, in time for the 5th January deadline so please give them plenty of time to do this by applying early.


(1) Johansson and Köster (2018) Plant Biol (Stuttg). 2018 Apr 1. doi: 10.1111/plb.12729.
(2) Matthews (1953) Annals of Applied Biology. 40, 377-383.
(3) Carr et al., (2019) Plant Sci. doi: 10.1016/j.plantsci.2018.04.011.

How good is research at University of Edinburgh in Biological Sciences?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 109.70

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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