PhD Studentship: Finding Achilles Heel – Investigating how to control major bacterial pathogens

Applications Close: 02 December 2019

Contract Length: 3.5 years

Bacterial infection remains a major cause of morbidity and mortality with hospital acquired infections still common. The increase in numbers of bacterial which are AMR (antimicrobial resistant) makes prevention of infection more important than ever. The hospital environment is a reservoir for pathogens which are often AMR and cleaning and disinfection is critical to preventing infection. However, there is currently a lack of knowledge about how many of the active agents used in disinfection act, how bacteria respond to exposure to these agents and whether resistance can develop and if this will also affect antibiotic resistance.

This project is a partnership between the Quadram Institute and GAMA healthcare which will address these issues. The Quadram Institute is a world class centre for microbiology and has recently developed new methods to study the role of all genes in a bacterium in response to any given stress. This technology (based on use of massive transposon mutant libraries) will be applied here to understand the responses of key pathogens to important agents critical to infection prevention. GAMA are a leading developer and manufacturer of infection control products and the student will work closely with both organisations including spending time within GAMA’s own state of the art research facility. The ultimate aim of the project is to generate data that will help develop the next generation of infection control products to help control the threat from AMR bacterial infections.

This project is funded by the MRC Doctoral Antimicrobial Research Training Programme (DART). Shortlisted applicants can expect to be interviewed on Thursday 16th January 2020. Formal invitations to interview will be circulated during the week commencing 16th December 2019.

The MRC DART Management Board approves entry to the programme and studentship offers. Offer letters will be sent to successful candidates as soon as possible after the interview date, usually within 10 working days.

Students will benefit from collaborative training with the Norwich Research Park Doctoral Training Programme, as well as a breadth of training possibilities across UEA and Norwich Research Park partners.

Through collaboration with a non-academic partner, iCASE students will spend 3-18 months on a placement with the partner company. Through this placement, students gain access to training, facilities and expertise not available in an academic setting alone, significantly enhancing future employability.

Applicants must meet the minimum eligibility requirements as specified by UKRI-MRC, as well as the entry requirements for UEA postgraduate research degrees. For further information and to apply visit: 


Funding Notes

In general, funding is available to UK and EU nationals who have established UK or EU residency. For funding eligibility guidance, please visit our website : View Website.

Full studentships are for 3.5 years and cover a stipend (2019/0 UKRI rate: £15,009pa plus iCASE partner contribution: £2,500pa), research costs and tuition fees at UK/EU rate and are available to candidates who meet the UK residency requirements.

Candidates from EU countries who do not meet the UK residency requirements may be eligible for a fees-only award if they meet the EU residency requirements.