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[ccp4bb] Ph.D. Student Position development of software for modeling and design of RNA molecules

Dear colleagues,

this e-mail is to bring to your attention an opening for a PhD student position in our lab. Please send applications by March 15th to employment@genesilico.pl. See details below.



Ph.D. Student Position: development of software for modeling and design of RNA molecules

Laboratory of Bioinformatics and Protein Engineering at the International Institute
of Molecular and Cell Biology (IIMCB), Warsaw, headed by Prof. Janusz M. Bujnicki, offers a position for a Ph.D. student motivated to develop a career in an interdisciplinary and international team.

Deadline for applications is March 15th, 2019. Job starting date: as soon as possible.

Project description: One of the fundamental challenges of biology is to design RNA molecules that form desired structures and carry out desired functions. Designing RNA sequences with specific folding properties has already proven useful in a number of applications in biotechnology, molecular medicine, and material science.
We have already developed new methods for the computational design of RNA sequences and structures. We are currently improving the software and testing our methods in practice, including synthesis and structure determination of the designed molecules. The current goal is to improve the design of RNA molecules that can switch between several defined structures, depending on the conditions.

As a Ph.D. student, you will be involved in the development and testing of a computational method for designing RNA molecules that are capable of switching between desired alternative 3D structures. Your work will be focused on programming and computational analyses. Students interested in interdisciplinary research may optionally learn how theoretical predictions are tested experimentally.

Required for this position:

Desired, but not essential expertise:

Priority will be given to candidates with expertise most relevant to the project and to the profile of the laboratory, who are familiar with our work (e.g., our publications and our software) and who can convincingly explain why their expertise is a good fit for our requirements.

We offer:

The funding for the initial stage of the Ph.D. project is provided by a grant entitled “Development of new methods for designing RNA molecules that fold into desired spatial structures and their use for the development of new functional RNAs and for prediction of noncoding RNAs in transcriptome sequences", carried out as the OPUS 2017/25/B/NZ2/01294 grant of the Polish National Science Center (NCN). The research project is expected to be continued and funded by the host laboratory for four years (the full cycle of Ph.D. studies).

The institution: International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Warsaw www.iimcb.gov.pl is one of the
top-ranked (A+) Polish research institutes, which provides a stimulating and interdisciplinary research environment. Research topics at IIMCB cover the wide area of molecular, cellular, and structural biology.
The Institute is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, has excellent core facilities and supportive administration. The institute is located on a large biomedical campus that offers access to equipment and various possibilities of training and collaboration. The working language of the institute is English.

The team: Our group http://genesilico.pl is highly interdisciplinary and international. We are driven by curiosity to answer fundamental questions in bio-sciences and to make new molecules that are practically useful. We combine various approaches for studying the structures and mechanisms of action of biological macromolecules, in particular RNA, as well as macromolecular complexes involving nucleic acids, proteins, and small molecules. We use computational methods and knowledge-based design to engineer molecules with new structures and functions. Our key strength is the integration of various types of heterogeneous data, and the combination of theoretical and experimental approaches.

The experimentalists in the group use biochemical and biophysical approaches to elucidate the structures and functions of our target molecules, while our theoreticians develop innovative computational tools. We make our software available publicly, often as web servers. We collaborate to gather, process, and analyze the data, make new predictions and discoveries, and to develop new solutions that address important scientific problems.

Ph.D. studies: Our Ph.D. students are enrolled in Ph.D. schools on the campus, in particular at the collaborating institutes of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Ph.D. students have an opportunity to participate in a hands-on training program, covering theoretical and practical aspects of molecular biology, biochemistry, biophysics of proteins and nucleic acids, structural biology, and bioinformatics. Students-programmers are trained in software development. Ph.D. studies involve a full-time research project in one or more of the areas mentioned above, combined with training in soft skills (e.g., presenting scientific results, writing publications and grant applications, managing projects).

How to apply:

The Ph.D. student will be selected from candidates in an open competition, according to the procedure complying the rules for granting scholarships for young scientists in research projects funded by the National Science Centre
(NCN Council Resolution No. 96/2016 dated October 27, 2016 r.) and to the rules of the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers as a part of HR Excellence in Research strategy

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