Three year Postdoctoral position in Fungal/Plant genome analysis
A Postdoctoral Fellow position is available in the laboratory of Dr. Nicolas Corradi (https://corradilab.weebly.com/) at the University of Ottawa (ON, Canada). The position is initially available for one year, and is renewable for up to 3 years.
The successful applicant will spend most of his/her research time in the Corradi lab, and the PDF research is expected to improve knowledge of important bio-fertilizers and natural products using genome analyses. Throughout the research, the PDF will also acquire important professional skills in data management and participate in an industry-relevant R&D product with high translational potential through collaborations with the industry. In particular, the successful PDF will acquire unique experience in the domain of organic agriculture, natural health product research, regulation, and industry practices.
The applicant is expected to work on these two projects in collaboration with PhD students.
1) Assembly, annotation and analysis of dikaryotic arbuscular mycorrhizal genomes:
Recent studies from our lab (see Ropars et al. 2016 Nature Microbiology; Corradi and Brachmann, 2017, Trends in Plant Science) have shown that model AMF strains are either homokaryotic – i.e. contain multiple co-existing nuclei with one MAT-locus and one dominant genome - or “dikaryotic” – i.e. all nuclei harbor one of two co-existing and diverging MAT-loci.
Recent studies in our lab have revealed the existence of many additional dikaryotic AMF strains, providing new and exciting opportunities to investigate the genome evolution and biology of this unique cellular condition. The applicant will be involved in the acquisition of optimal – ideally chromosome level - assemblies for all dikaryotic strains found to date. This will be done by combining Illumina sequencing approaches with long-read technologies (PacBio, Nanopore). New genome assemblies will be annotated and compared to investigate the degree, nature and function of genome diversity that is present within and among AMF dikaryons. In parallel, the newly assembled genomes will be used to detect the relative contribution of each nucleotype to the AMF development and establishment of mycorrhizal symbiosis using RNA-seq approaches.
2) Assembly, annotation and analysis of the Echinaea purpurea genome.
Echinacea species are widely used for medicinal purposes, with a global market of $1 billion, yet high-quality genome data from this group is lacking. This project aims to distinguish unique Echinacea genetic resources by identifying new and improved traits related to both agriculture and natural health product through genome analyses. In collaboration with other plant genome experts, the PDF will identify putative new genes and biochemical pathways to guide development of new products with improved medicinal properties. The PDF will also benefit from interdisciplinary research skills provided by this collaboration (i.e. in-house laboratory work, bioinformatics) and the R&D experience with the industrial collaborator, which builds industry-relevant knowledge relating to natural products and agriculture.
Applicants and Desired Skills:
Applicants are expected to have strong background in “Genome Analysis”, and in handling large amounts of sequence data. Evidence of prior success with assembly of large and complex genomes using long-read technologies is desired. Past practical knowledge of Plant Genomics, or evidence of work on highly heterozygous diploid and /or polyploid organisms, will be seen as an asset for this position.
Starting date and Application:
The position is available starting August 2018, with the application process closing as soon as a suitable candidate is found. A complete application package will include: 1) a CV; 2) a short description of past research accomplishments and future goals; and, 3) the names and e-mail addresses of at least 2 references. Complete applications can be sent to Dr. Nicolas Corradi: ncorradiATuottawa.ca
The University of Ottawa is a large, research-intensive university, hosting over 40,000 students and located in the downtown core area of Canada’s capital city (http://www.science.uottawa.ca/fac/welcome.html). Ottawa is a vibrant, multicultural city with a very high quality of life (http://www.ottawatourism.ca/fr/)