£6,000 FindAPhD Scholarship | APPLICATIONS CLOSING SOON! £6,000 FindAPhD Scholarship | APPLICATIONS CLOSING SOON!

Secrets of secretion: the role of Klu-targets in entero-endocrine cell differentiation in flies and humans

   School of Biosciences

   Friday, August 26, 2022  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

The entero-endocrine cells of the gut make up the largest endocrine organ. The hormones produced by these cells play a pivotal role in the overall regulation of organism physiology.

Dysregulation of hormone signaling leads to obesity and diabetes, two of the most prevalent and costly chronic diseases in the UK. Our lab was recently awarded an AMS/Wellcome Trust Springboard Award to tackle how entero-endocrine cells differentiate, and how the differentiation of these cells is affected with age differentiation (Korzelius et al., 2019 Nature Communications, Tauc et al., 2021 Elife). In this project, we will use both the fruit fly intestine as well as human intestinal organoids to identify novel regulators of entero-endocrine differentiation.

This PhD project will investigate how EE differentiation is regulated in flies and humans and will focus on finding novel, conserved regulators of EE cell fate. This project will allow you to build skills working with both flies and 3D-organoid culture as well as building skills in genetics, molecular biology and image analysis. We will e.g. perform crosses with inducible expression of RNAi’s, lifespan assays, microdissection and staining of gut tissue and FACS-isolation of midgut cell populations for whole genome RNA-sequencing.

You will work in the dynamic environment of the School of Biosciences at the University of Kent. The School of Biosciences has a rich expertise on Cancer and Ageing research, and we will have close connections to the ageing-related research in the labs of Dr. Jennifer Tullet and Dr. Marina Ezcurra. You will also be able to work with our collaborators at the Hubrecht Institute in the Netherlands and the FLI-Leibniz Institute on Ageing in Jena.

We are looking for a curiosity-driven student that works both independently and as part of a team and is interested in a multi-disciplinary research project. The ideal candidate should have knowledge of molecular biology techniques such as DNA/RNA-isolation, PCR and cloning as well as cell culture. Additional experience in either Drosophila husbandry and genetics, immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy would be an advantage. Excellent writing and communication skills in English are necessary.


The closing date for applications is 12 noon on the 26th August 2022. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview at the beginning of August.

This PhD project is due to start in September 2022.


This scholarship includes a doctoral stipend (equivalent to the Research Councils UK National Minimum Doctoral Stipend for 2021/2022 of £15,609), tuition fees at the home UK rate, £3,600

consumables funding, free access to all departmental equipment and access to further research funding.

In order to be considered for this position you must have qualifications/experience equal to the standard of a good honours degree at a first or upper second class level from a UK academic research organisation. Degree qualifications gained from outside the UK, or a combination of qualifications and/or experience that is equivalent to a relevant UK degree, may be accepted.

UK residential conditions: · Be a UK National (meeting UKRI residency requirements), or

· Have settled status, or

· Have pre-settled status (meeting residency requirement) or

· Have indefinite leave to remain or enter

If you are applying as an overseas student (this includes EU nationals), overseas fee rates will be applicable.

Fund how to apply text: Webpage(s): https://www.kent.ac.uk/biosciences/people/3191/korzelius-jerome

Twitter: @JeromeKorzelius

Contact: For further information or informal enquiries, please contact Dr Jerome Korzelius:

How to Apply

To apply please go to https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/286/genetics-phd

You will need to apply through the online application form on the main University website. Please note that you will be expected to provide personal details, education and employment history and supporting documentation (Curriculum Vitae, transcript of results, two academic references).

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