Job opportunities

Open positions:

  • Postdoc position: Regulation of conjugative elements mobility in streptococci

A 2 year-post-doctoral position is available starting in 2017 in DynAMic Laboratory (UMR1128 joint INRA-Université de Lorraine Research Unit, Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy, France) for a junior scientist with a background in molecular biology and protein biochemistry.

The successful candidate will work in the team headed by Nathalie Leblond-Bourget (ICE-TeA team, http://dynamic.univ-lorraine.fr/) on the characterization of the molecular cascade that regulates the mobility of Integrative and Conjugative Elements in streptococci. The research is part of the project MATICE funded by the French agency of research (ANR-15-CE21-007, 2016-2018) in collaboration with UMR1319 MICALIS INRA, Agro Paris-Tech, Jouy-en-Josas and EA4678 CIDAM, Université d’Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand.

Mobile genetic elements play a key role in bacterial genome evolution by enabling gene acquisition through horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Multiplication of bacterial genome sequencing projects provided a remarkable opportunity to explore the pool of bacterial mobile genetic elements (« mobilome »). This shed the light on elements integrated in the chromosome called Integrative and Conjugative Elements (ICEs) which are still poorly known despite their high prevalence in bacteria. ICEs encode their own excision, transfer by conjugation and integration. In addition to the genes involved or controlling their mobility, ICEs carry cargo genes which can provide properties (adaptation, virulence, antibiotic resistance) advantageous for bacterial host. Thus, these Mobile Genetic Elements can contribute to the adaptation of bacteria to changing environments but also to the emergence of new pathogens. A prerequisite to the control of HGT events is to reproduce them in vivo and to characterize the environmental and physiological factors that can increase their occurrence. Our model of study are ICEs of the ICESt3 family that we first described in Streptococcus thermophilus, a bacterium used in dairy industry and that we then detected in many other streptococci that are natural inhabitants or transit in the human oral cavity and gastrointestinal tract. The objectives of the project will be to decipher the molecular mechanisms of regulation controlling ICE excision and transfer in inducing and non-inducing conditions.

Applicants should have a proven and successful expertise in cloning, protein expression and purification in bacteria and in the study of DNA-protein and protein-protein interactions. Scientific curiosity, professional conscience, ability for team-work and motivation are of foremost importance.

Applicants should send a cover letter, CV, and contact information of two references to Sophie.Payot@nancy.inra.fr (deadline: january 10th 2017).