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Roles of PrimPol in genome replication

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  • Full or part time
    Prof A J Doherty
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Start Date: September, 2016

Supervisor: Prof. Aidan Doherty, [Email Address Removed]

The Project:
DNA damage tolerance pathways allow our cells to bypass lesions that would otherwise block DNA replication, enabling them to survive major genotoxic stress and maintain genomic integrity. Lesion bypass DNA polymerases play a central role in the cellular mechanisms that facilitate damage tolerance and mutations in these replicative enzymes are associated with ageing and major human diseases, including cancer.

This multi-disciplinary project will integrate state of the art cellular, genetic and biochemical approaches to characterise the roles of a recently discovered polymerase called PrimPol (1) in the bypass of DNA lesions/structures during chromosomal replication in human cells. The aim of this project is to understand the molecular mechanisms by which PrimPol promotes efficient replication of damaged (2) and structured DNA (3) in vertebrate cells.

The successful applicant will join the Genome Damage and Stability Centre, an internationally renowned Institute carrying out research on the response of cells to DNA damage, genome instability and its relationship to human disease. We provide a stimulating and supportive research environment and our expertise covers a wide range of experimental systems. Further information about our research can be obtained from our website at

Project enquiries should be sent to Prof. Aidan Doherty (email :[Email Address Removed]). Application enquiries should be sent to Miss Alice Caryer (Email: [Email Address Removed]) Formal applications should be made using our online application system at . Please include a full CV, two references, transcripts and statement of interest.

Person specification
Applicants should have a minimum of a BSc degree (grade 2.1 or higher) in Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Genetics or a closely related subject.

Funding Notes

This project is only offered on a self-funding basis. It is open to applicants with funding or those applying to funding sources. Details of tuition fees can be found at :

A bench fee may also be payable on top of the tuition fee to cover specialist equipment or laboratory costs required for the research. The amount charged annually will vary considerably depending on the nature of the project and applicants should contact the primary supervisor for further information about the fee associated with the project.


1. Rudd, S., et al. PrimPol – a new polymerase on the block. (2014) Molecular and Cellular Oncology, doi: 10.4161/23723548.2014.960754.
2. Bianchi, J. et al. PrimPol bypasses UV photoproducts during eukaryotic chromosomal DNA replication. (2013) Mol Cell 52, 566.
3. Schiavone, D. et al. PrimPol Is Required for Replicative Tolerance of G Quadruplexes in Vertebrate Cells. (2016) Mol Cell. 61,161-9.

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