About the Project
Mast cells (MCs) are tissue resident cells that are strategically located in mucosal tissues and are among the first cells to come in to contact with pathogens. MCs contribute to bacterial immunity through the release of a great variety of pro- and anti-inflammatory pre-stored and de novo synthesized mediators that lead to the recruitment of immune cells to the site of infection and modulation of their activities and direct bacterial killing.
Whether MCs are trained upon single microbial immunomodulatory challenges, whether this training leads to a temporal distant functional memory and how this influences protection against multiple diseases remains unclear. The goal of the project is to investigate the contribution of human mast cells to innate functional memory. In more detail, aims of the study are to investigate which microbial immunomodulatory stimuli induce memory MCs, what is the phenotype and effector functions of a trained MC and how does MC memory translate to disease protection.
This project involves include culturing and differentiation of human MCs and the evaluation of their function by flow cytometry (e.g. CyTOF), advanced immunofluorescence, transcriptomic analysis and bioinformatics analysis, bacterial culture and infection assays. Moreover, this project will be combining MC-centred immunology research and microbiological expertises at the internationally recognized Manchester Collaborative Centre of Inflammation Research and Lydia Becker Institute of Immunology and Inflammation.
Training/techniques to be provided:
Methodologically, the project will include the culture and differentiation of human mast cells and other cell lines and the evaluation of their function by state-of-the-art flow cytometry, advanced immunofluorescence, transcriptomic analysis, deep immunophenotyping and metabolic/proteomic approaches.
Applicants are expected to hold, or about to obtain, a minimum upper second class undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in life sciences. A Master degree in a relevant subject and experience in cell biology/ immunology is desirable.
For international students we also offer a unique 4 year PhD programme that gives you the opportunity to undertake an accredited Teaching Certificate whilst carrying out an independent research project across a range of biological, medical and health sciences. For more information please visit http://www.internationalphd.manchester.ac.uk
As an equal opportunities institution we welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and transgender status. All appointments are made on merit.
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• Jadkauskaite L, Bahri R, Farjo N, Farjo B, Jenkins G, Bhogal R, Haslam I, Bulfone-Paus S, Paus R. Nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like-2 pathway modulates substance P-induced human mast cell activation and degranulation in the hair follicle. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2018 May 31. pii: S0091-6749(18)30777-2. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2018.04.039.
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