VACANCIES

The CVR is the UK's largest grouping of human and veterinary virologists.  Its mission is to carry out multidisciplinary research on viruses and viral diseases of human and animals, and to translate the knowledge gained for the improvement of human and animal health.  The CVR has excellent facilities for conducting research in molecular biology and virology located in a new purpose-built research building at the Garscube campus of the University of Glasgow.  The CVR is a core component of the Institute of Infection, Immunity & Inflammation within the College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences at the University of Glasgow.

Senior Lecturer/Reader/Professor (Infectious Diseases)

The CVR is an international research centre with a collegiate critical mass of researchers dedicated to the multidisciplinary study of viruses and viral diseases. The CVR is located in state-of-the-art facilities including high containment laboratories, insectaries (at both BSL2 and BSL3), imaging, genomics, bioinformatics and cryo-electron microscopy. The collegiate and collaborative environment of the CVR fosters a broad research portfolio with studies spanning the molecular, structural and cellular levels, through to the individual host and affected population. 

The CVR is beginning a major recruitment drive for independent investigators at all levels. For this specific post, the appointee will have an outstanding track record and conduct and lead a world-class programme of research in any area of virology/viral diseases, complementing the current programmes of the Centre in either basic, clinical or translational research. Applicants working at the interface between computational biology and viral diseases are also welcomed to apply. Appointment will be made at either Senior Lecturer, Reader or Professorial level depending on the experience and track record of the candidate.

This is the first of several positions to be advertised as part of our future research planning. Enquiries are therefore welcomed from either individual investigators or from teams of investigators interested in joining the CVR.

Informal enquiries should be directed to the Chair of the Search Committee, Prof David Bhella (david.bhella@glasgow.ac.uk). For further details and to submit an electronic application online visit: www.gla.ac.uk/about/jobs/  and look for Job Reference number:  031001.   Closing date 22/12/19.

 

PhD Studentship: Understanding virus-host interactions by analysing diversity in viral and cell populations
Project Ref: 2020/01/TT/DR
Anticipated Start Date: October 2020 Duration: 3.5 years full-time
Closing date to apply: 31.01.20

Eligibility:
• This studentship is open to science graduates with, or who anticipate obtaining, at least a 2:1 or equivalent in a relevant biological subject in their undergraduate degree, or a Masters degree - subject to university regulations. Other first degrees, e.g., veterinary science, will be considered. Experience in virology and bioinformatics/computational biology will be an advantage. You should be looking for a challenging, interdisciplinary research training environment and have an active interest in the control of infectious diseases.
• This is a fully-funded studentship only open to UK students and eligible EU students who qualify for home-rated fees, in line with Residential Eligibility Guidelines for Studentships.
• Students without English as a first language must provide evidence that they meet the English language requirement, e.g. with an IELTS score of 7.0 and no less than 6.5 in any of the subsections.
Supervision:
Principal Supervisors: Dr Toby Tuthill (The Pirbright Institute), Prof David L Robertson (MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research)
Co-Supervisors: Dr Caroline Wright (The Pirbright Institute), Dr Srikeerthana Kuchi, Dr Quan Gu, Dr Ana da Silva Filipe (MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research)
Project Details:
Many RNA viruses introduce errors in their viral genome during replication. Such viruses therefore exist as genetically variable populations which facilitates rapid evolution and successful infection. Viruses in the picornavirus family are amongst the simplest mammalian viruses, consisting of a single molecule of RNA enclosed in a non-enveloped protein capsid and therefore provide good models to understand viral population diversity. Despite their simplicity they are also responsible for significant diseases of humans (e.g. polio, common cold) and livestock (foot-and-mouth disease). Viral population diversity can be examined by deep sequencing and several existing studies have established that diversity is required for pathogenic phenotype in vivo. Our preliminary data indicates a requirement for viral population diversity in order for foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) to overcome the interferon system in primary cell cultures.

Cells also exist as populations with phenotypic variation, both in tissues in vivo and in cultures in vitro. Variation in cell populations can be characterised by bulk RNA sequencing (RNAseq) of sub-populations or more recently by single cell sequencing (scRNAseq) of many individual cells. In addition to the expected variation in primary cell cultures, studies by us (and others) have also shown that even within continuous cell lines the population of cells displays a range of susceptibility to virus infection with some cells in a population resistant to infection, i.e., they are naturally less able to support replication of the virus.

This project will combine studies in these aspects of virus and cell variation with the hypothesis that diversity in virus and cell populations contributes to the outcome of infection. Objectives of this study:
- To understand the role of viral population diversity in overcoming innate barriers to cellular infection.
- To understand the differences in cell populations that account for variation in susceptibility of cells to virus infection.

Example approaches available include: viruses engineered to have altered error rates to manipulate population diversity; GFP reporter viruses to measure replication in individual live cells; creating cell populations containing genome wide gene knock out by CRISPR; use of bioinformatics software such as Linux, Python, R, Monocle, SEURAT and SCUBA.

This multi-disciplinary project will expose the student to the research environments at both Pirbright and the Centre for Virus Research and will develop expertise in both virology/molecular laboratory work and the bioinformatics/computational approaches used to analyse the laboratory-generated data.
References for Background Reading:
• Poliovirus Intrahost Evolution Is Required to Overcome Tissue-Specific Innate Immune Responses. Nat Commun 8 (1), 375 2017. Yinghong Xiao, Patrick Timothy Dolan, Elizabeth Faul Goldstein, Min Li, Mikhail Farkov, Leonid Brodsky, Raul Andino.
• Foot-and-mouth Disease Virus Type O Specific Mutations Determine RNA-dependent RNA Polymerase Fidelity and Virus Attenuation. Virology 518, 87-94 May 2018. Chen Li , Haiwei Wang, Tiangang Yuan, Andrew Woodman, Decheng Yang, Guohui Zhou, Craig E Cameron, Li Yu
• Ultra-deep sequencing for the analysis of viral populations. Current Opinion in Virology Volume 1, Issue 5, November 2011, Pages 413-418. Niko Beerenwinkel, Osvaldo Zagordi
• Mapping the Evolutionary Potential of RNA Viruses. Cell Host Microbe 23 (4), 435-446 2018. Patrick T Dolan, Zachary J Whitfield, Raul Andino
• The Use of Single-Cell RNA-Seq to Understand Virus-Host Interactions. Curr Opin Virol 29, 39-50 Apr 2018. Sara Cristinelli, Angela Ciuffi
Registration, Training and Funding:
This is a Pirbright Institute/University of Glasgow fully funded project. The student will be registered with the University of Glasgow. The student will initially be based at The Pirbright Institute but will spend time at MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research as required. Eligible students will receive a minimum annual stipend of £15,009 plus a cost of living top-up allowance of £2,200 per annum. University registration fees will be paid. A full range of research and transferrable skills training will be made available to the student as appropriate.
Applications:
Visit website for details of how to apply – https://www.pirbright.ac.uk/postgraduate-studentship-opportunities/how-apply

Essential documents:
- Application Form
- CV
- Two references sent directly by your referees
Please email your application to studentship@pirbright.ac.uk by the closing date 31.01.20.

 

PhD Studentship: Modulation of gene regulation in Aedes aegypti upon infection by Wolbachia
Project Ref: 2020/05/JK/SS
Anticipated Start Date: October 2020 Duration: 3.5 years full-time
Closing date to apply: 31.01.20

Eligibility:
• This studentship is open to science graduates (with, or who anticipate obtaining, at least a 2:1 or equivalent, in a relevant biological subject in their undergraduate degree, or a Masters degree - subject to university regulations). Other first degrees, e.g. veterinary science, will be considered. You should be looking for a challenging, interdisciplinary research training environment and have an active interest in the control of infectious diseases.
• This is a fully-funded studentship only open to UK students and eligible EU students who qualify for home-rated fees, in line with Residential Eligibility Guidelines for Studentships.
• Students without English as a first language must provide evidence that they meet the English language requirement, e.g. with an IELTS score of 7.0 and no less than 6.5 in any of the subsections.
Supervision:
Principal Supervisors: Dr Jaroslaw Krzywinski (The Pirbright Institute), Prof Steven Sinkins (Centre for Virus Research, University of Glasgow)
Co-Supervisor: Prof Luke Alphey (The Pirbright Institute)

Project Details:
The mosquito Aedes aegypti is the primary vector of arboviruses that pose a growing threat to global human health. Wolbachia are common endosymbionts of arthropods that can manipulate host reproduction through patterns of sterility known as cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), which can result in invasion of insect populations. Some Wolbachia strains also block replication of arboviruses when introduced into Ae. aegypti; in combination with Wolbachia invasiveness, this offers a promising novel approach to controlling mosquito-borne viral diseases such as dengue. In addition, CI has been exploited in field releases of Wolbachia-infected males to nearly eliminate wild Aedes populations.
Wolbachia is known to exhibit strong tropism to the gonads. This project will explore molecular responses in the Ae. aegypti ovary to Wolbachia, including changes in expression of mosquito genes and the regulatory mechanisms involved in differential gene expression. The student will implement a broad range of approaches, including next generation sequencing analysis and other bioinformatics tools, various molecular biology techniques, and mosquito transgenesis.
References for Background Reading:
Nazni et al. (2019), Current Biology, December 16th issue.
Geoghegan et al. (2017) Nature Communications, 8: 526.
Registration, Training and Funding:
This is a Pirbright Institute/University of Glasgow fully funded project. The student will be registered with the University of Glasgow and will spend broadly equivalent amount of time at the Pirbright Institute and the University of Glasgow to undertake training and complete specific project tasks as required. Eligible student will receive a minimum annual stipend of £15,009 plus a cost of living top-up allowance of £2,200 per annum. University registration fees will be paid. A full range of research and transferrable skills training will be made available to the student as appropriate.

Applications:
Visit website for details of how to apply –https://www.pirbright.ac.uk/postgraduate-studentship-opportunities/how-apply   

Essential documents:
- Application Form
- CV
- Two references sent directly by your referees
Please email your application to studentship@pirbright.ac.uk by the closing date 31.01.20.               

Please also follow our Facebook and Twitter pages for updates on new vacancies.

   Twitter Logo