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Investigating Leishmania mRNP granule dynamics and formation

Project Description

Leishmaniasis is the second deadliest parasitic disease with over 1.2M new
cases each year across 98 countries. The Walrad and Plevin labs are long
term collaborators and part of the York Biomedical Research Institute, one of
the largest groups of researchers working on leishmaniasis, with partnerships
in >20 countries. Our labs investigate Leishmania gene regulatory pathways
to find parasite vulnerabilities using complementary in vitro and in vivo
multidisciplinary approaches. Gene regulation in Leishmania parasites is
overwhelmingly post-transcriptional and dynamic regulatory complexes
(mRNPs) fluctuate in response to cellular stimuli, enabling survival.

Stress granules (SGs) represent a diverse group of mRNP-regulating
membraneless organelles formed by liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS).
mRNPs oscillate between SGs and the translational machinery and promote
parasite endurance during transitions between host environments. You will
investigate mRNP dynamics as they relate to Leishmania stress granules. The
project will enable you to learn a wide variety of skills, including kinetoplastid
genetics, biochemistry, molecular parasitology and proteome/transcriptome
analysis. Good opportunities for travel and conference participation are
available, with key collaborations in place both internally and externally.

Funding Notes

This studentship is fully funded for four years and covers: (i) a tax-free annual stipend at the standard Research Council rate (£15,009 estimated for 2020 entry), (ii) research costs, and (iii) tuition fees at the UK/EU rate.


Entry requirements: Students with, or expecting to gain, at least an upper second class honours degree, or equivalent, are invited to apply. The interdisciplinary nature of this research project means that we welcome applications from students with backgrounds in any biological, chemical, and/or physical science, or students with mathematical backgrounds who are interested in using their skills in addressing biological questions.

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

FTE Category A staff submitted: 44.37

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

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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