Are you an ambitious researcher looking for your next challenge? Do you have an established background in cellular electron microscopy approaches? Do you want to further your career in one of the UKs leading research intensive Universities?
The genome of influenza A virus (IAV) consists of 8 different viral RNA molecules (vRNAs). To generate infectious virions, these 8 vRNAs must travel from their site of synthesis in the nucleus to the plasma membrane, where they are packaged as a bundle into new virions. Only virions with all 8 vRNAs will be infectious, so their recruitment into the genome bundle is a critical step in the IAV lifecycle. However, little is known regarding the how these 8 vRNAs are transported to the plasma membrane, including how and where they are selected to form the genome bundle. The current model proposes that the cellular protein Rab11 facilitates trafficking of ER-derived vesicles coated in multiple vRNAs, which provide a platform for the bundling of the 8 vRNAs during transit. Strikingly, all research so far on vRNA transport has been performed in laboratory-adapted ‘non-polarised' cells, which differ significantly from the polarised epithelial cells found in the human airway and which IAV naturally infects. For example, the polarity of microtubules in these two cell types is opposite. Therefore, it is possible that everything we know about IAV vRNA transport and bundling is incorrect.
This project aims to unravel the molecular mechanism of IAV vRNA transport and bundling in IAV-infected polarised cells by: 1) Developing a polarised epithelial cell system amenable to IAV infection and microscopy imaging. 2) Uncovering the molecular mechanisms of vRNA transport and bundling within polarised cells. And 3) Visualising IAV-infected polarised cells at molecular resolution.
For this role, you should have a PhD (or close to completion) in structural biology, biochemistry, virology or a closely allied discipline. You should also have experience in cellular electron microscopy imaging, and designing and writing up research independently, as well as a developing track record of peer reviewed publications and excellent skills in communication, time management, planning, and teamwork.
To explore the post further or for any queries you may have, please contact:
Dr Juan Fontana, Associate Professor
Tel.: +44 (0)113 343 8069 Email: [email protected]
Dr John Barr, Associate Professor
Email: [email protected]Location: Leeds - Main Campus
Faculty/Service: Faculty of Biological Sciences School/Institute: School of Molecular & Cellular Biology / Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology Category: Research Grade: Grade 7 Salary: £37,099 to £44,263 p.a. Working Time: 100% - This role will be based on the University campus. We are also open to discussing flexible working arrangements. Post Type: Full Time Contract Type: Fixed Term (for 14 months due to external funding) Release Date: Thursday 02 November 2023 Closing Date: Thursday 23 November 2023 Reference: FBSAS1071 Downloads: Candidate Brief