PhD Project in Ecological Epigenetics
We seek a highly-motivated student for a fully-funded (Marsden Fund) PhD scholarship
position. The project will investigate environmental stress induction of
epigenetic variation (DNA methylation, RNA editing) using the experimental organism
Didemnum vexillum, a marine colonial invertebrate. More broadly, the project seeks to
determine if epigenetic changes provide an evolutionary ‘buffer’ against rapid environmental
change and is a mechanism to compensate for low levels of genetic variation.
The student will be enrolled through the University of Auckland (www.auckland.ac.nz) but
will be based at the Cawthron Institute, Nelson, New Zealand (www.cawthron.org.nz).
The successful applicant will have a sound background in both molecular and population
genetics along with a good grasp of bioinformatics theory. The student must be comfortable
with learning new software for bioinformatic and statistical analyses. An ecological
background would be advantageous.
The ideal candidate is expected to hold a relevant Hons / Master’s degree and must be
eligible to enrol in the University of Auckland’s PhD programme. This PhD scholarship has
an annual stipend of NZ$25,000 (tax free) plus student fees for a period of 3 years subject to
satisfactory progress. International (i.e. non-New Zealand resident) students are welcome
and encouraged to apply.
For more details contact Dr Kirsty Smith at the email address below.