Research Fellow: RNAi-based tools to unlock functional genomics of obligate oomycete plant pathogens. A postdoc position is available in the Professor Mahmut Tör group at the School of Science and the Environment, University of Worcester to work on an NSF-funded project in collaboration with teams at Virginia Tech.

The appointee will deploy state-of-the-art methods to the development of tools for robust, cost-effective of RNAi via application of dsRNA to suspensions of spores, and to optimize these protocols for applicability to a range of downy mildew species.

We will begin by testing whether naked, E. coli-transcribed RNAs (NECT-dsRNAs) are as efficient as short, chemically synthesized dsRNAs (SS-dsRNAs), and we will optimize a variety of parameters that could influence the efficacy of gene silencing. 

Our research program focuses on;

  1. Comparing silencing efficacy of SS-dsRNAs to NECT-dsRNAs and optimize length, dose, and target region of NECT-dsRNAs; 
  2. Quantifying dsRNA internalization;
  3. Comparing silencing efficacy of “naked” dsRNA and dsRNA protected by E. coli minicells;
  4. Test efficiency of multiplexed dsRNA to simultaneously silence multiple genes.

Candidates should have a PhD or submitted their thesis in the above-mentioned areas with an excellent record of peer-reviewed publications and strong oral/written communication skills. 

For informal queries regarding this role please contact Mahmut Tor, Professor, Chair of Molecular Plant and Microbial Biology on

Location: St John’s Campus
Salary: £37,100 to £41,732
Post Type: Full Time
Contract Type:Fixed Term – 12 Months
Advertised On: Wednesday 23 August 2023
Closing Date: Sunday 24 September 2023
Interview Date: To be confirmed
Reference: SSE2304

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