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PhD Studentship Opportunity: Fungal endophytes for sustainable barley production


Natural Sciences

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Prof T Hodkinson No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

BioCrop: Biostimulants and Biopesticides for Crop production

We are seeking an enthusiastic and highly motivated student for a 4-year, DAFM-funded (Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine) project. The project is supervised by Trevor Hodkinson and Brian Murphy (TCD) and a collaboration with PIs at UCD, NUI Galway, and Teagasc and aims to develop and test new and existing biofertilisers and biopesticides (against aphid-borne disease and Ramularia Leaf Spot) for Barley production. Increasing EU regulations on fertiliser use and the application of currently available plant protection products require the need to seek and validate effective alternatives for growers.

PhD studentship description

A comprehensive collection of well-characterisednew endophytes will be generated and tested for the promotion of barley growth and disease resistance. We plan to test combinations of the novel endophytes at the glasshouse and farm scale for crop production. The wild relatives of cereals represent a largely untapped source of beneficial microbial endophytes and they have huge potential to reduce costly and environmentally degrading chemical inputs such as fertilizers and pesticides. Our previous research on a single crop wild relative of barley (Hordeum murinum) highlighted the huge diversity of potential crop endophytes and developed a focused approach for fungal endophyte selection and subsequent application to crop production. Complementary combinations of endophytes will be identified suitable for crop application. This established approach will be used to find novel endophytes suitable for barley nutrient use efficiency and for fungal and aphid-borne disease.

Requirements and award

Applicants should have a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree or M.Sc. in an appropriate discipline such as Botany, Plant Biology, Mycology, Pathology or Genetics

Stipend

The student will receive a tax-free stipend of €24,000 per year from which tuition fees are deducted. There are additional funds for conference travel.

Further Information

Professor Trevor Hodkinson, Trinity College Dublin; e-mail:[Email Address Removed] and Dr Brian Murphy [Email Address Removed]

Application Procedure

Submit an electronic copy of Curriculum Vitae and a letter of interest (as a single PDF file) to: [Email Address Removed] (quoting the reference number (2019PROG705) in the subject field.

Closing date 09.10.2020 or until filled.
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