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Research Associate

Based at
University of York - Heslington Campus
Hours of work
Contract status
Fixed term
32,236 - 39,609 a year
Posted Date
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Job Reference

Role Description


A full-time postdoctoral Research Associate position is available (for up to 24 months) to work on a BBSRC Follow on Fund project "Targeting Plant Pathogens Through LPMO Gene Silencing”. The project is led by Prof. Katherine Denby and Prof. Simon McQueen-Mason in the Centre for Novel Agricultural Products (CNAP), Biology Department, University of York.

The project offers an exciting opportunity to combine world-class research with potential commercial impact. Our overall aim is to explore the function of lytic polysaccharide monooxygenases (LPMOs) during infection of crop plants by pathogenic oomycetes and fungi, and to determine the most effective RNAi strategy for targeting pathogen LPMOs and reducing virulence.

We will target two types of plant pathogens; obligate biotrophic oomycete pathogens responsible for downy mildew disease of lettuce and spinach, and Botrytis cinerea, a broad host range fungus causing significant economic losses in a range of fruit and vegetable crops. We will use genome and transcriptome data to predict key LPMOs in the selected pathogens, develop lab-based high-throughput methodologies to test the function of these in pathogenicity, and explore techniques to enhance the effectiveness of RNAi application.


  • To conduct research under the supervision of senior colleagues and to contribute to the production of research.
  • Write up research results for dissemination through publications, seminar and conference presentations as well as public engagement and outreach activities.
  • To assist in the identification and development of potential areas of research and the development of proposals for independent or collaborative research projects.
  • To develop and initiate collaborative working internally and externally

Skills, Experience & Qualifications

We are looking for an enthusiastic, motivated researcher keen to drive this innovative approach to crop protection and generate new understanding of pathogen virulence strategies. 

You will have a PhD in Plant Science, Microbiology or a similar subject and have experience of carrying out both independent and collaborative research with a proven ability to write up work for publication. You should have knowledge of a range of research techniques and methodologies (including molecular biology), ability to analyse large-scale data sets and be an effective communicator able to present research findings to different audiences.

The role is for a fixed-term period starting by Sept 2019 for a minimum of 21 months (maximum of 24 months). Interviews will be held at the University of York on 24th July 2019.

Informal enquiries can be made to Professor Katherine Denby,

Alternatively, please contact

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