Dr. Deana Erdner, University of Texas, Marine Science Institute (http://sites.utexas.edu/erdnerlab/is seeking motivated candidates for a fully funded graduate research assistant position as part of an international research project: PIRE: Advancing Global Strategies and Understanding on the Origin of Ciguatera Fish Poisoning in Tropical OceansThis project is an international collaborative effort that includes scientists from the U.S., Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, Cuba, Hong Kong, and Norway.

This NSF-funded project will provide Research Assistantships, including summer support, for a Ph.D. student to participate in research on the chemical and biological diversity of the epiphyte communities that are the source of secondary metabolites that lead to ciguatera fish poisoning. In addition to research projects in their home laboratory, Ph.D. students will take part in international research exchange visits to collaborator laboratories, and mentoring of undergraduate interns.

The successful applicant will focus on questions related to the biodiversity of macroalgal epiphyte communities and their function, using sequencing and transcriptomics to study community composition and gene expression, and how these relate to chemical diversity. Experience with DNA/RNA manipulation and sequence analysis is highly desirable. An M.S. in a related field is strongly preferred. Applicants that do not have or expect an M.S. degree before Fall 2018 may be able to enroll in the M.S. program, with the opportunity to transition to the Ph.D. based on progress. Interested candidates can apply either though the graduate program in Marine Science (https://utmsi.utexas.edu/academics/graduate) or Plant Biology (https://cns.utexas.edu/plantbio-graduate-program).

Start date: June 2018 or Fall semester 2018

Application instructions:
Before submitting an official application, prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact Dr. Erdner ([email protected]) to express their interest in this opportunity. Please use the email subject “PIRE PHD” and include (1) a short description of why you are interested in the project; (2) your CV; and (3) academic transcripts and test scores.

Dr. Erdner are committed to mentoring young scientists and developing a diverse marine science research community. Women and members of underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply. The University of Texas is an equal opportunity institution.