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Newcastle University offers a PhD scholarship in mitochondrial biology and advanced imaging techniques 2024

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Are you interested in studying the role of mitochondria and nuclear positioning in skeletal muscle? Do you want to join a team of experts in mitochondrial biology and advanced imaging techniques? If yes, then you might be eligible for a fully-funded PhD scholarship at Newcastle University.

Scholarship Details

The scholarship is sponsored by Newcastle University (NUAcT) and covers the tuition fees (at the home rate) and an annual stipend of £18,622 (2023/2024 rate), with support for research costs. International candidates will have to pay the difference between the home and international fees.

The scholarship is for a duration of three years, starting from September 2024. The application deadline is 30th April 2024.

The scholarship is supervised by Dr Amy Vincent, who is a leading researcher in mitochondrial myopathy, a condition characterized by mitochondrial dysfunction.

Research Project

The research project aims to develop a cutting-edge methodology, Correlative Live Light and Electron Microscopy (CLEM), for the study of mitochondria in cells and tissues. The project will also investigate the structural changes in patients with mitochondrial myopathy, such as the increased presence of nanotunnels, which are double membrane connections between non-adjacent mitochondria, and the altered organization of myonuclei, the nuclei found in muscle cells.

The main objectives of the project are:

  • Characterize the positioning of myonuclei in relation to mitochondrial function in individual muscle fibers.
  • Optimize and refine the CLEM methodology by integrating live fluorescent light microscopy with Transmission EM and 3D volume EM techniques.
  • Develop efficient labeling techniques for a range of mitochondrial protein targets within this system.
  • Conduct siRNA knockdown experiments targeting key regulators of mitochondrial dynamics and myonuclear positioning, and utilize the CLEM methodology to investigate their impact.

The project will advance imaging methodologies, enabling future researchers at Newcastle to gain a deeper understanding of various biological processes and provide novel insights into the fundamental biology of mitochondria and its association with mitochondrial myopathy.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the scholarship, you must have:

  • An undergraduate or master’s degree in a relevant subject area, such as cell biology, genetics, molecular biology, neurology, neuroscience, pathology, physiology, or a related field.
  • A good command of English, with an IELTS score of 6.5, with a minimum of 5.5 in each subsection, or an equivalent qualification.
  • An ATAS clearance certificate, if you are an international applicant, prior to obtaining your visa and to study on this programme.

How to Apply

To apply for the scholarship, you must follow these steps:

  • Visit the Apply to Newcastle Portal and register your personal details.
  • Choose PhD Translational and Clinical Research Institute as the programme of study.
  • Insert the studentship code TC076 in the studentship/partnership reference field.
  • Attach a covering letter and CV. The covering letter must state the title of the studentship, quote the studentship reference code TC076 and state how your interests and experience relate to the project.
  • Attach degree transcripts and certificates and, if English is not your first language, a copy of your English language qualifications.

FAQs

  • Q: What is the difference between the home and international fees?
  • A: The home fees are the fees charged to UK and EU students, while the international fees are the fees charged to students from outside the UK and EU. The difference between the home and international fees for the academic year 2023/2024 is £13,500.
  • Q: What is an ATAS clearance certificate and how do I get one?
  • A: An ATAS clearance certificate is a document that confirms that your area of research and study does not have any security implications. You need to apply for an ATAS clearance certificate online through the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office website. You will need to provide details of your course, your research project, and your supervisor. The process can take up to four weeks, so you should apply as early as possible.
  • Q: Who can I contact for more information about the scholarship or the project?
  • A: You can contact Dr Amy Vincent, the supervisor of the project, by email at [email protected].