Fully Funded PhD studentship

Impact of paused polymerase on transcriptional noise during development

Project :

Live cell imaging of transcription revealed that transcription is discontinuous and occurs in bursts. These have a great potential for generating cell-to-cell variability but, in the  context  of  a  developing  organism,  must  be  regulated  to  ensure  reproducible outcomes. In this project, the PhD student will decipher the impact of paused polymerase on transcriptional noise in Drosophila embryos. Indeed, during early development, there is a switch in transcriptional regulation whereby developmental promoters acquire paused polymerases as a major regulatory checkpoint. The effects of pausing on transcriptional noise have not yet been characterized and could in principle either buffer or increase noise.

The student will employ quantitative live imaging of transcription (MS2/MCP) combined  to mathematical  approaches,  to detect each polymerase  initiation event for each nucleus in vivo and to model extrinsic and intrinsic noise.

Techniques: Confocal imaging, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Image Analysis

Candidate : Motivation, perseverance, rigor, creativity and curiosity.

Candidates should be cell/developmental biologists with interest in gene expression and quantitative biology. Prior experience in Drosophila genetics and coding are a plus but not  mandatory.   Required   diploma:  A  research   master  degree  from  a  University, Engineering  School  or  “Grande  Ecole”,  in  a  field  relevant  to  the  project  (biology, biophysics, engineering). Students with interdisciplinary profile are strongly encouraged to apply.

Environment :

This project belongs to a LabMuse international PhD training network, supported by the University  of  Montpellier.  In  this  network,  we  will  decipher  the  mechanism  and functions of transcriptional noise during development and disease. We will use two biological  models: Drosophila  embryos  where noise buffering  is important,  and HIV-1 latency where stochasticity is beneficial.

The  network  will  train  3  PhD  Students  by  4  teams  located  in  Montpellier  (E. Bertrand, S. Chambeyron, M. Lagha, O. Radulescu). It will provide common activities, interdisciplinary training and an environment uniting biologists and mathematicians.

How  to apply: Please send an email containing  "[LabMuse  PhD]" in its subject, with your motivation letter, CV and reference names to mounia.lagha@igmm.cnrs.fr  and on the  LabMuse Epigenmed.

Deadline: May 30th 2020

Funding : Start date: 01/10/2020. Salary: ~ 2130 euros/month (brut).


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