Postdoctoral position in molecular genetics of resistance to late blight in Solanum americanum, a wild potato relative.

Closing Date: 21.02.2019 Reference ID: JJ01/2019 Salary: £33,199 - £39,609

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Researcher with skills in plant genomics and molecular biology to join the Laboratory of Prof. Jonathan Jones at the Sainsbury Laboratory (TSL) with the goal of cloning two blight resistance genes from Solanum americanum.  The project is a collaboration with Paul Birch and Ingo Hein at JHI, Dundee, with the Kamoun lab at TSL and with the Vleeshouwers lab in Wageningen.

Plant immunity is triggered upon pathogen effector detection by immune receptors. We have been using RenSeq sequence capture to accelerate cloning of Rpi- genes from S. americanum that act against P. infestans. and have isolated several (see; Witek et al (2016)). High resolution mapping populations are well advanced to define Rpi-amr4 and Rpi-amr10, two additional strong Rpi- genes. Our long-term goal is to deploy smart stacks of Rpi- genes to control late blight in the field, and to identify the recognised effectors.

This position would suit researchers interested in the molecular mechanisms that underpin plant innate immunity, with experience in using bioinformatics methods to manage genomics data from Illumina and PacBio platforms, and with an appetite for learning and exploiting sequence-capture based methods such as RenSeq. The vacancy arises due to the promotion of Dr Kamil Witek to a more senior position at TSL. The successful applicant will work closely with Dr Xiao Lin who is identifying the recognized effectors for Rpi-amr3 and Rpi-amr1E.

The Sainsbury Laboratory is a world-class centre for plant/microbe interactions and is looking to appoint an exceptional candidate who is educated to PhD level or working towards completing a PhD in plant molecular genetics or the genomics of host pathogen/interactions. The post-holder will have opportunities to develop their technical and transferable skills during the duration of the appointment through training programmes, coaching and mentoring.

The post-holder will have a keen enthusiasm for research and have long-term career aspirations in science. As well as the ability to carry out independent work they must also be a strong team player and have excellent communication skills. The successful candidate will join a multidisciplinary group with wide interests in molecular plant pathology.

Salary will be within the UEA Research and Analogous Staff Grade 7 scale at between £33,199 and £39,609 pa; the appointment level will reflect qualifications, skills, knowledge and achievements. The position is offered for 2 years, with scope for extension.

Applicants should provide a CV, including the names and contact details of two referees, and a covering letter addressing the selection criteria. Applications may be submitted online using the ‘Apply’ button below. Alternatively, please send formal applications, quoting the reference number JJ01/2019, either by e-mail to or by post to Kim Wood, HR Manager, The Sainsbury Laboratory, Norwich Research Park, Norwich NR4 7UH, UK.

Closing date: 21st February 2019 although applicants will be reviewed from 1st February 2019.