University of Dundee

Postdoctoral Research Assistant (mRNA cap regulation of gene expression)

Centre for Gene Regulation and Expression
Job Reference: 
Closing Date: 
Sunday, April 30, 2017
Grade 7 (£31,076 - £38,183)

We are inviting expressions of interest from potential postdoctoral researchers to join our group to investigate the impact of mRNA cap regulation on gene expression.

We strive to understand the function of mRNA cap regulation in mammals, in health and disease. The mRNA cap is an important but poorly understood structure which recruits the enzymes and co-factors involved in RNA processing and translation initiation. We have recently discovered mechanisms by which mRNA cap formation is regulated by oncogenes, signalling pathways and developmental pathways, resulting in changes in transcription and translation, which impact on cellular fate and function. The enzymes which catalyse mRNA cap synthesis are emerging as integrators of cellular signals which govern cell physiology. Our challenge now is to understand how the regulation of the different mRNA cap methylations impacts on specific mechanisms of gene expression. We aim to understand how the mRNA cap co-ordinates expression of the transcriptome and proteome following different physiological triggers.

We are looking for an enthusiastic and curious postdoc to join us to investigate the gene regulatory mechanisms which the mRNA cap co-ordinates. The project will involve developing embryonic stem cell systems to analyse mRNA cap regulation and using advanced sequencing technologies to determine the precise role of mRNA cap modifications. Candidates for this position should have (or about to have) a PhD. This position would suit a researcher with experience in gene expression research including transcriptomic analyses. Experience with embryonic stem cells is an advantage.

Grasso 2016: mRNA cap methylation in pluripotency and differentiation Cell Reports 2016 Aug 2;16(5):1352-65

Aregger 2016: CDK1-cyclinB activates RNMT Molecular Cell 2016 Mar 3;61(5):734-46

The Cowling lab is situated in the Centre for Gene Regulation and Expression, a centre of scientific excellence with world-leading resources and state-of-the art technologies. ( The University of Dundee is one of the leading universities in Europe for research in Life Sciences (

This position is available from 1 June 2017 for 3 years.

Appointment as a Postdoctoral Research Assistant on the Grade 7 salary scale is dependent upon you having been awarded a PhD. An appointment may be considered if you are shortly expected to be awarded a PhD. The initial appointment will be made as a Research Assistant on the Training Grade 7 salary scale (Spinal Point 28, £30,175).

How to apply:

To apply on-line click here.

The University of Dundee is a diverse community and is committed to equality of opportunity for all by providing a supportive, flexible and inclusive working environment.  We have family friendly policies (including flexible working and childcare vouchers), staff groups for LGBT and BME; and prayer room facilities.

The University of Dundee has received the Athena SWAN Bronze Award ( which recognises the promotion of gender equality and has made further commitment to advancing inclusive culture which supports and encourages all under-represented groups.

The University of Dundee is a Scottish Registered Charity, No. SC015096.