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PhD: Improving Photosynthesis

   School of Biosciences

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  Prof A Fleming  Applications accepted all year round  Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

Improving photosynthetic efficiency has been identified as one of the few remaining traits for exploitation if we are to achieve the significant increases in crop yield required to feed the projected 9 billion world population by 2050. In recognition of this, major international research efforts are underway to improve photosynthetic performance. One of the emerging issues is our incomplete understanding of leaf development. We need a deeper knowledge of leaf cellular architecture, how it develops, how it impacts on photosynthetic performance, and tools to modify structure. As a result of previous work in the area (Van Campen et al (2016) Plant Physiol. 170, 1655-1674; Lehmeier et al, (2017) Plant J. 92, 981-994; Lundgren et al (2019) Nature Comms 10, article 2825) we have a number of projects available for academically outstanding, self-funded PhD students. Can we modify the trajectory of cellular differentiation in early rice leaf development? How does this influence photosynthesis?

The successful candidate(s) will gain training in microscopy, plant anatomy, plant biochemistry & physiology, and plant developmental biology. Sheffield provides excellent infrastructure for the project (ranked in top 5 UK for Biological Sciences in REF2014). You will join an integrated group working on various aspects of leaf structure/function in a range of plant species. Look at our webpages for further information.

Science Graduate School

As a PhD student in one of the science departments at the University of Sheffield, you will get access to training opportunities of the Science Graduate School designed to support your career development by helping you gain professional skills that are essential in all areas of science. You will be able to learn how to recognise good research and research behaviour, improve your communication abilities and experience the breadth of technologies that are used in academia, industry and many related careers. Visit to learn more.

Funding Notes

The applicant will need to find funding to cover tuition fees and living expenses. Candidates will be invited for interview on a rolling basis until the position(s) are filled. The applicant should have, or expect to gain at least an upper second class degree, or equivalent overseas qualification, in a relevant subject
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