University of Dundee

Early Stage Researcher – Marie Curie Research Fellow

Molecular Microbiology
Job Reference: 
Closing Date: 
Saturday, July 27, 2019
Please refer to advert

Genetic study of the molecular mechanisms of sensory perception in B. subtilis

The PATHSENSE (Pathogen Sensing) ETN investigates the molecular mechanisms of sensory perception in bacterial pathogens. Rapid and sensitive systems to sense and respond to environmental changes are a cornerstone of a bacterium’s survival apparatus, and understanding these sensory systems is central to predicting their behaviour. The team participating in the PATHSENSE Network use state-of-the art methodologies, including structural biology, proteomics & protein biochemistry, molecular biology, bacterial genetics, food microbiology, mathematical modelling, cell biology, microscopy and comparative genomics to tackle this question. It is an inter-sectoral Network that comprises 8 leading Universities, 1 public research institution, 4 companies (from spin-off to large multi-national) and 1 governmental agency. A vacancy has recently arisen at the University of Dundee. We are therefore looking to recruit a research fellow for 15 months . The position is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 721456.

The objectives of the work are to: (1) build on the generation σB reporter fusions that allow the quantification of stressosome-dependent stress sensing in B. subtilis; (2) use random transposon mutagenesis and targeted mutagenesis of RsbR and its paralogues to identify mutants with defective stress sensing (either locked-on or blind); (3) develop single-cell and population based mathematical models that account for the stress sensing behaviour of B. subtilis.

More information about the Division of Molecular Microbiology, University of Dundee and the PATHSENSE program can be found in the following websites:

•    Division of Molecular Microbiology (

•    School of Life Sciences (

•    University of Dundee (



The role is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 721456. "PATHSENSE" (H2020-MSCA-ETN-721456) - A Training Network to Understand and Exploit Mechanisms of Sensory Perception in Bacteria.

Benefits and salary:

The MSCA-ITN programme offers a highly competitive and attractive salary and working conditions. The successful candidates will receive a salary in accordance with the MSCA regulations for early stage researchers. Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment but it will be based on a Living Allowance of €3110/month (correction factor to be applied per country) + mobility allowance of €600/month. Additionally researchers may also qualify for a family allowance of €500/month depending on family situation. Taxation and Social Contribution deductions based on National and Institutional regulations will apply and will be deducted from the gross payment highlighted above. In addition to their individual scientific projects, all fellows will benefit from further continuing education, which includes the possibility of participating in scientific skills courses, transferable skills courses, workshops and conferences, and secondments to partner labs.

Applicants need to fully comply with the three eligibility criteria:

1)    Early-stage researchers (ESR) are those who are, at the time of recruitment by the host, in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. This is measured from the date when they obtained the degree which formally entitles them to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the research training is provided, irrespective of whether or not a doctorate was envisaged. The applicants cannot already hold a PhD.

2)    Conditions of international mobility of researchers: Researchers are required to undertake trans-national mobility (i.e. move from one country to another) when taking up the appointment. At the time of selection by the host organisation, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of their host organisation for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to their recruitment. Short stays, such as holidays, are not taken into account.

3)    English language: Network fellows (ESRs) must demonstrate that their ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English is sufficiently high for them to derive the full benefit from the network training. Non-native English speakers are required to provide evidence of English language competency before the appointment is made. An IELTS score of 6.5, or equivalent, is the minimum requirement.

A few facts about The School of Life Sciences at Dundee:

•    The School of Life Sciences was the top-rated university biology department in the UK in the 2014 national Research Assessment Exercise.

•    The School of Life Sciences has over 900 research and support staff from 59 countries and external funding in excess of £40 million per year.

•    The School of Life Sciences has outstanding laboratory and technological infrastructure.

Dundee, set on the east coast of Scotland, lies in an area of outstanding natural beauty, including large sandy beaches and challenging hills. It has a high-standard, but relatively low-cost, of living.  Dundee has twice been named ‘the best place to work in Europe’ in a poll of scientists conducted by The Scientist magazine


Applications should include a full CV detailing any publications you may have, a brief outline of why your research experiences meets our goals and the names and contact details of 3 academic referees.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 12 pm (BST) on 27th of July 2019.

Recruitment Process:

Eligible applications will be shortlisted by the Principal Investigator at University of Dundee. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview at the University of Dundee on either the 16th of August 2019 or the 23rd of August 2019. All applicants will be informed of the outcome by end of September 2019. Successful applicants will need to prove that they are eligible (three aspects: in respect of the ESR definition, the mobility criteria, and English language proficiency). The selected ESR is expected to start in October or November 2019.

All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment.

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The diversity of our staff and students helps to make the University of Dundee a UK university of choice for undergraduate, postgraduate and distance learning. Family friendly policies, staff networks for BME, Disabled and LGBT staff, membership of Athena SWAN, the ECU Race Equality Charter and Stonewall as well a full range of disability services, create an enjoyable and inclusive place to work.

“This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 721456”.