About the Project
Recently, we have identified the transcription factor Foxm1 as being specifically upregulated in the regenerating spinal cord in Xenopus (Pelzer et al. 2020). Our data indicate that Foxm1 has a crucial role in controlling the balance between proliferation and differentiation during spinal cord regeneration by modulating the relative length of the different phases of the cell cycle. Building on these studies, we will characterise the changes in cell cycle dynamics during spinal cord regeneration and uncover the signals controlling the length of each phase of the cell cycle. We will directly test the effect of changing cell cycle dynamics on neuronal differentiation and regeneration. As foxm1 is expressed in the regenerating spinal cord and is crucial for neuronal differentiation, we will determine the intrinsic and extrinsic cues leading to the formation of foxm1+ cells using single cell RNA sequencing experiments. These experiments will also reveal which neuronal types are being generated during early regeneration.
Altogether, these data will establish the molecular and cellular mechanisms leading to the successful recovery of spinal cord function after injury, paving the way to improve neuronal regeneration in mammals.
Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) a minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a related area / subject with at least one year lab experience. Candidates with experience with in vivo work or with an interest in bio-informatic analyses are encouraged to apply.
For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website (https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/study/research/apply/). Informal enquiries may be made directly to the primary supervisor. On the online application form select PhD Bioinformatics.
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.
Phipps L., Marshall L., Dorey K. and Amaya E. (2020) Models for studying regeneration: Xenopus Development 147 (6) dev180844
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