PhD Studentship in Soil Microbial Interactions and
Molecular Genetics Soil CADRE

3 years Fixed Term, starting Jan 2018

Applications are invited for a three year AHDB and Charities-sponsored PhD student position in Soil Microbial Interactions (Soil CADRE - Soil and Cover crop Associations Developing Rhizo-biological Efficiency) to work with Dres Lydia Smith and Emma Tilston at NIAB, Cambridge, and Dr Uta Paszkowski, Dept. of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge. This studentship is part of the AHDB soil programme.

The student will make use of long term rotation projects based near Ipswich, Saxmundham and Norwich; and will interact with a farmer-led initiative focussing on the impact of rotational practices impacting on soil biology. The project will extend knowledge from projects focussed on the interaction of rice roots with mycorrhizal fungi, led by Dr Uta Paszkowski into wheat. These interactions play an important role in nutrient uptake by the root tissues. Rotational and soil management regimes that impact on symbiotic interaction between mycorrhizal fungi and wheat roots will be identified, and will in part be molecularly characterised.

The student will partition their time between the University of Cambridge Plant Sciences Department, the field stations and NIAB in Cambridge, and will also have access to resources at East Malling Research Station in Kent. Details of these organisations and sites can be found at and

The successful applicant should have a good background in plant biology, preferably in cereal crop biology. Knowledge of soil microbial interactions and an interest in agriculture, molecular biology of plant - microbial interactions will be of advantage. A full UK Drivers Licence is essential together with the ability and appetite to work in a range of environments from the laboratory through to the farmerís field in all seasons.

This is a fully funded studentship providing fees and living expenses for UK applicants. The current stipend for 2016/7 is £14,296 per annum. EU applicants who have been resident in the UK for education purposes for three years might be eligible for this position. Students are invited to University DTP events and activities throughout the studentship at the University, and must take part in training in their first year, such as Statistics, Computational and Systems Biology and Research Skills. The student will be registered at Cambridge University. If you have any queries about your eligibility please contact Sandra O'Neill, Graduate Secretary on

For more details about the project please contact Dr Lydia Smith: or Dr Uta Paszkowski

To apply, please email a covering letter, CV (including 2 referees) and publications list by clicking on the 'Apply Now' button or post to the HR Office, NIAB, Huntingdon Road, Cambridge, CB3 0LE, quoting reference T/333.

Closing date: 31 October 2017.

posted: 07 August 2017     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.