Research Associate - Comparative Genomics

Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol (GB)
£32,548 - £36,613
06 Jun 2018
End of advertisement period
05 Jul 2018
Contract Type

We seek a Research Associate with expertise in the area of comparative genomics for a new project funded by a 2-year BBSRC grant to Prof Wendy Gibson and Dr Tom Williams on the genomes of African livestock trypanosomes.

Animal African trypanosomiasis (AAT) places a major burden on livestock health, sustainable food production and food security in sub-Saharan Africa. The causative organisms are tsetse-transmitted trypanosomes, some of which have a wide host range including cattle, small ruminants and pigs, while others are restricted to pigs. This host specificity has evolved in two lineages of livestock trypanosomes, but the underlying reasons are unknown. Our hypothesis is that host specificity has a genetic basis that we can uncover by comparative genomic analysis of pig-specific trypanosomes and their relatives that have a broad host range. At Bristol, we have assembled a unique collection of trypanosome isolates that will enable us to address this fundamental question. We will obtain high quality genome sequences from these isolates, complementing the trypanosome genome data already available from other livestock trypanosomes, and identify sets of genes that are associated with the emergence of host specificity. Not only will this allow us to test hypotheses on how host specificity evolved, but also make predictions about the probability of host switches in the future. The new trypanosome genome sequences we will obtain will serve as an essential resource for future work on these important parasites, including drug development.

Candidates will be expected to have a PhD (or equivalent) in Biochemistry or related discipline and to have a track record of postdoctoral research in a project-related area. The position is full-time, with funding secured for 2 years in the first instance.

For informal enquiries contact Wendy Gibson by email at Further information available via:

The closing date for applications is on 23:59 Thursday 5th July 2018.

The University is committed to creating and sustaining a fully inclusive culture. We welcome applicants from all backgrounds and communities.

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