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Investigation of lipoprotein biology in the equine and human pathogen Rhodococcus (Prescottella) equi (HLS/SE/DRFAPP7P/63596)

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  • Full or part time
    Prof Sutcliffe
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round

Project Description

Bacterial lipoproteins are functionally diverse and physiologically important cell envelope components. Typically lipoproteins represent around 2% of the bacterial proteome and because of their location, they are likely important in host-pathogen interactions. This project will continue our investigations of pathways of lipoprotein biosynthesis, which may represent an important target for the development of novel antibacterial agents, in conjunction with studies to determine the functions of specific lipoproteins.

The work will focus on the important equine and human pathogen Rhodococcus (Prescottella) equi. Our bioinformatic analyses have identified more than 200 predicted lipoproteins encoded in the R. equi genome. Therefore, we will generate a mutants lacking lgt and lsp, the key enzymes in lipoprotein biosynthesis. This will allow further studies to explore the contribution of lipoproteins to the virulence of this pathogen. Further studies use these genetic backgrounds to examine the nature of the interaction between Lgt and Lsp. In addition we will clone and characterise specific lipoproteins of interest as virulence factors.

The project will provide excellent training in biochemistry, bioinformatics, microbiology and molecular biology.

Informal Enquiries
For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see
https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/research/postgraduate-research-degrees/how-to-apply/
Please ensure you quote the advert reference above on your application form.

Eligibility
For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see
https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/research/postgraduate-research-degrees/how-to-apply/
Please ensure you quote the advert reference above on your application form.

How to Apply
For further details of how to apply, entry requirements and the application form, see
https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/research/postgraduate-research-degrees/how-to-apply/
Please ensure you quote the advert reference above on your application form.

Funding Notes

This studentship is only open to self-funding candidates. Self-funding candidates are expected to pay University fees and to provide their own living costs. In addition, a ‘bench fee’ will have to be paid to cover project running costs (at a level that will be determined specifically for each project).

References

Sangal, V., Jones, A., Sutcliffe, I.C., Goodfellow, M. and P. Hoskisson (2014). Comparative genomic analyses reveal a lack of a substantial signature of host adaptation in Rhodococcus equi (“Prescottella equi”) from foals to humans. Pathogens and Disease 71, 352-356.

Sutcliffe, I.C., Harrington, D.J. and M.I. Hutchings (2012). A phylum level analysis reveals lipoprotein biosynthesis to be a fundamental property of bacteria. Protein & Cell 3: 163-170.

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