PhD opportunity: Metagenomics-powered probing of virus dynamics in soil and rhizosphere

We are recruiting a PhD candidate with experience and interest in environmental microbiology or molecular ecology to investigate bacteriophage turnover in natural soil. There is growing recognition of phages as key players in soil ecology and organic matter cycling, but the environmental factors that drive their dynamics are still unknown. The successful candidate will study phage dynamics along growing roots and evaluate how they influence nutrient cycles under current as well as predicted future carbon inputs. This will be achieved by coupling isotopic labelling techniques (13C, 18O stable isotope probing) to metagenomic sequencing. The goal will be to identify phage-host-plant interactions, contributing to the larger aim of understanding how soil carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles are influenced by phages.

This position involves cutting-edge experimental work in a young and growing research group, embedded in a leading faculty for geoscience and environmental microbiology. The project will provide extensive possibilities for collaboration both internally and with local and international scientists.

• MSc with background and clear interest in biogeochemistry, environmental microbiology and/or molecular ecology
• Experience or demonstrable interest in molecular methods and bioinformatics
• Creativity, self-motivation and enthusiasm for experimental science
• Ability to work independently and in a team
• Strong English communication skills

Start date will ideally be in Oct/Nov 2024 (negotiable). Applications including a CV, motivation letter and overview of experience in relevant methods and techniques should be sent by email before 26 July 2024 to For further information please contact Jun-Prof. Kyle Mason-Jones at Employment will be arranged by the administration of the University of Tübingen. Equally qualified candidates with disabilities will be given preference in the hiring process. The University of Tübingen is committed to equal opportunities and diversity. Women are explicitly encouraged to apply.

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