Plasma cells are the antibody secreting cells of the immune system thus are vital for fighting infection. However, dysregulation of plasma cell function is linked to a broad range of disease from Lupus to multiple myeloma. At present, it is not known how plasma cell differentiation and homeostasis is regulated. The aim of this PhD project is to identify the key signaling pathways critical for this process. To identify these pathways we will use a combination of cutting edge in vitro cell culture models and novel mass-spectrometry based approaches. Once key pathways have been identified, we will manipulate them using chemical and genetic based approaches and determine how this affects plasma cell biology. In the long term, this information may help in the development of novel drugs for regulating plasma cell function in vivo. This project represents an exciting training opportunity where the student will become an expert in advanced proteomics, mechanistic cell biology and immunology.
Science Graduate School As a PhD student in one of the science departments at the University of Sheffield, you’ll be part of the Science Graduate School. You’ll get access to training opportunities designed to support your career development by helping you gain professional skills that are essential in all areas of science. You’ll be able to learn how to recognise good research and research behaviour, improve your communication abilities and experience the breadth of technologies that are used in academia, industry and many related careers. Visit http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/sgs to learn more.