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Re-engineering Golgi dynamics in plants

Project Description

The growing global population requires the development of novel strategies to sustainably increase food production. Organelle movement is dynamic and linked to changes in cell size, plant biomass and in response to factors which affect food production such as pathogens (Perico and Sparkes, New Phytol. 2018; Ryan and Nebenführ, Plant Physiol 2018). Our understanding of the molecular mechanisms which drive and regulate organelle movement is poor, as is our understanding as to how movement affects cell growth.

The project will identify the molecular components which drive organelle movement, more specifically the Golgi. By mutating the identified molecular tools, we will then be able to re-engineer Golgi movement and determine how changes in movement affect cell size. The project will provide training in plant imaging, cell biology, molecular biology and molecular biochemistry. Imaging techniques will likely include confocal microscopy and optical tweezers. The supervisory team consists of Dr Imogen Sparkes (main supervisor) and Prof David Stephens (second supervisor) at the University of Bristol, and Dr Mike Deeks (external supervisor) at the University of Exeter.

The project will be based at the University of Bristol within the plant group, which comprises multiple groups working on diverse topics ranging from cereal genomics to how plants respond to external stimuli(

For further enquiries please contact Imogen Sparkes (). Experience in plant biology is not essential although may be advantageous. To apply, please check your eligibility and follow the instructions for the SwBio DTP application process.

Funding Notes

A fully-funded four year SWBio DTP studentship will cover:

- a stipend* (at the standard UKRI rate; £15,009 per annum for 2019-2020)
- research and training costs
- tuition fees (at the standard UKRI rate)
- additional funds to support fieldwork, conferences and a 3-month internship

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

FTE Category A staff submitted: 64.60

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

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