PhD studentship in Campylobacter Genomics and Evolution (2017-2020) available in our laboratory

This exciting project will be conducted under the direct supervision of Prof Samuel K. Sheppard, and based within Department of Biology and Chemistry at the University of Bath (UK) in the new Milner Centre for Evolution.

Project description:
The successful applicant will join a multidisciplinary group focusing on comparative genomics and evolution of bacterial pathogens of public health importance. They will investigate the genetic basis and ecology of Campylobacter by explaining the factors involved in generating and maintaining genotypic and phenotypic diversity among isolates in the primary reservoir of human disease, poultry. Comparative and functional genomics approaches will examine genetic structuring and answer fundamental questions about how genetic variation and genome plasticity influence adaptation and the evolution of pathogens. Bioinformatics will be exploited for the design of vaccines for the control of Campylobacter in broiler chickens on farm. They will be responsible for culturing isolates, extracting DNA for genetic characterisation, analysing genomic data and carrying molecular and functional characterisation in the lab. The student will also spend a three month placement at Ridgeway Biologicals Ltd where he/she will be involved in the manufacture of autogenous vaccines prior to testing on farm.

Enthusiasm and practical experience in microbiology, molecular techniques (PCR, sequencing) and computer based genetic analysis, is necessary but training and support will be provided to strengthen these areas. The successful candidate will be highly motivated, creative, independent and have expertise in microbiology or bioinformatics (or both), and a relevant degree. Previous experience in a molecular biology laboratory or in genome analysis is also strongly desirable. Good English writing and oral skills are essential. The applicant must be a UK citizen or have resided in the UK for 3 years prior to appointment.

– The duration of a studentship is 3-4 years (2017-2020).
– The position is open until filled, but a preferred deadline for application is 1st Dec 2016, to allow for registration and the project to start ASAP from Feb 2017.
– Salary will be commensurate with regular UK postgraduate stipends, i.e. £14,000 per annum tax-free.
– Please contact Samuel Sheppard ( for informal inquiries or applications (please attach CV and describe motivation).

To apply by e-mail, please describe motivation and attach a CV to More details about the laboratory on this website.