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Probing Aurora-A binding sites to understand the molecular mechanisms that determine biological function

   Faculty of Biological Sciences

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  Dr D Tomlinson, Prof Colin Johnson, Prof A J Wilson  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Numerous critical “hub” proteins have been shown to be important in regulating biologically processes. However, the mechanism of this regulation at a protein level is still not fully understood for many of these important regulators. Understanding these mechanisms is vital to fully understanding function. An example of a protein important for normal cellular processes, as well as contributing to disease, is Aurora-A, a key cell cycle regulator. At the University of Leeds and Oxford, we have large team of scientists working on the understanding the role of Aurora-A. The appointee will work with this large and exciting network.

This position will use a novel biological tool, called an Affimer, to probe the key sites on Aurora-A. It will utilise a range of biological, biochemical and cellular techniques providing diverse and excellent training for a PhD candidate wishing to pursue a career in science or industry. The candidate will be based in the laboratory of Darren Tomlinson in FBS but will also work with the co-supervisors. Overall, this represents an exciting opportunity for any enthusiastic student interested in cell biology to develop a diverse set of skills with eminent scientists in Leeds and Oxford. 


You should hold a first degree equivalent to at least a UK upper-second class honours degree or a MSc degree in a relevant subject.

Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence that their English language is sufficient to meet the specific demands of their study. The Faculty of Biological Sciences minimum requirements in IELTS and TOEFL tests are:

  • British Council IELTS - score of 6.0 overall, with no element less than 5.5
  • TOEFL iBT - overall score of 87 with the listening and reading element no less than 20, writing element no less than 21 and the speaking element no less than 22.

How to apply:

To apply for this project applicants should complete an online application form and attach the following documentation to support their application. 

  • a full academic CV
  • degree certificate and transcripts of marks
  • Evidence that you meet the University's minimum English language requirements (if applicable).

To help us identify that you are applying for this studentship please ensure you provide the following information on your application form;

  • Select PhD in Biological Sciences as your programme of study
  • When asked for source of funding please make it clear that you are applying for a "White Rose BBSRC DTP Studentship"
  • Give the full project title and name the supervisors listed in this advert. You can be considered for up to 3 projects in total.

If you have any further queries regarding this opportunity, please contact [Email Address Removed]

Funding Notes

This opportunity is funded by the White Rose BBSRC DTP and will attract an annual tax-free stipend of £17,668 (based on the 2022/23 rate). The award will also cover academic fees. This opportunity is available to UK and International fee rated applicants. Please note that any expenses related to the relocation of international students to the UK (visa, insurance, NHS fees, flights, etc) would be their responsibility and are not covered by this award.

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