The protozoan parasites Trypanosoma brucei, Trypanosoma cruzi and Leishmania spp. cause a significant disease burden in many areas of the world. There is an urgent need for new and effective drugs to treat these devastating parasitic diseases. To support our drug discovery programs, we have established a Mode-of-Action (MoA) group (http://www.lifesci.dundee.ac.uk/other/kptools/). The principal goal of the group, led by Dr Susan Wyllie, is to define the specific molecular targets of compounds that are active against kinetoplastid parasites. A CASE PhD studentship is now available within the MoA group. The successful applicant will utilise a variety of state of the art molecular biology, cell biology and biochemical tools to identify the specific molecular target(s) of compounds that are known to be active against parasites in vitro. During the project the student will become proficient in various molecular parasitology techniques including whole genome approaches such as RITseq (Nature (2012) 482: 232-236) and chemical proteomic approaches such as CETSA. In the course of these studies the student will work closely with the scientists within our Drug Discovery Unit (http://drugdiscovery.dundee.ac.uk), gaining invaluable experience of the drug discovery process. In addition, there will be significant interaction with our CASE partners and long established collaborators in the Diseases of the Developing World team at GSK, Tres Cantos, Spain. Undoubtedly, this studentship represents a rare opportunity to play a significant role in the development of effective drugs for the treatment of neglected tropical diseases.
The studentship is available immediately and must start by 1st October at the latest. Eligibility: Applications for these MRC studentships are invited from excellent UK* students expected to hold (or be about to achieve) at least a 2:1 Honours degree in a relevant subject.
*Some EU students may be eligible for a full award if you meet Research Council residency criteria and other exceptions may apply.