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Molecular tools in evolutionary and ecological research


Applications are invited from postgraduate students to receive research training in the development and application of novel molecular techniques for evolutionary and ecological research in plants and animals. The research will take place in state of the art laboratories of the Faculty of Agricultural and Biological Science and the Medical School at the University of Newcastle, UK. Funding is available for 10 Fellowships for a training period of 6 - 12 months. At the end of the training, the student will have acquired valuable transferable skills, including, amongst others, a wide range of DNA techniques, applicable to many organisms and questions in the area of biodiversity, conservation biology, agriculture or medicine. DNA techniques such as RAPDs, AFLPs, micro satellites, cloning, development of species-specific micro satellites and DNA sequencing will be taught. Other techniques supporting the research are available, such as protein analyses, fluorescent microscopy, stable isotope analysis, mass spectrometry and in situ hybridization. Applicants are working on a PhD in the broad area of conservation biology, population genetics, phylogeography, taxonomy, molecular evolution, or kinship analysis. Using the DNA techniques the student can, for example
1 ) identify clonal structure;
2) analyze paternity;
3) determine genetic variation in endangered species;
4) analyze mate choice
5) determine taxonomic relationships between species or populations. The training in the use of DNA tools is enhanced by our experience in a wide range of related research areas in an environment where interdisciplinary research is encouraged, assuring an optimal integration of techniques and application. Students are expected to attend taught modules in DNA technology, communication and IT skills through our established MSc and PhD programmes. Information on research interests and teaching programmes can be found on our web sites (,, Applicants should have a background in evolutionary biology or ecology, with a fundamental or an applied interest in plants, animals or marine organisms. Prior experience with DNA techniques is not necessary. For eligibility and funding: see CORDIS web site. Newcastle University is an equal opportunity employer.

Funding Scheme

BUR - Bursaries, grants, fellowships


Ridley Building
NE1 7RU Newcastle Upon Tyne
United Kingdom