Graduate Student Positions
Prof Prichard Ph.D. student opportunity for commencement, 2017
Project title: Nematode ABC transporters involvement in anthelmintic macrocyclic lactones resistance: functional, molecular and genomic level.
Joint project between McGill University, Montreal and Université Paul Sabatier (UPS), Toulouse:
Roger Prichard, Professor, Institute of Parasitology, McGill University, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue (Montreal), Quebec, Canada; 1 (514) 398 7729; roger [dot] prichard [at] mcgill [dot] ca
Anne Lespine, PhD, Research Director, Laboratory of Food Toxicology, INRA, Toulouse, France; 33(5)8206 6352; anne [dot] lespine [at] toulouse [dot] inra [dot] fr
Project proposal Context:
Parasitic diseases cause considerable morbidity in animals and humans and their control by anthelmintics (AH) is challenged by the development of drug (AH) resistance. Overcoming AH resistance represent major challenge for maintaining good control of these diseases. The two laboratories collaborate to study the mechanisms of resistance to the most frequently used anthelmintics: the macrocyclic lactones (ML). The project will study the main molecular determinants reported to be involved in ML resistance in nematodes. We will address the role of the ATP Binding Cassette (ABC) transporters and the DYF proteins that control neuronal elongation in sensory amphids. Objectives and approaches: Several ABC transporter and cytochrome genes have been implicated in anthelmintic resistance in parasitic nematodes. The first challenge will be to characterize the role of ABC transporters in the early events of drug resistance development. For this, the student will use Caenorhabditis elegans as a nematode model and ML resistant C. elegans strains and Haemochus contortus isolates that are available in the laboratories (Ménez et al. 2016; Lespine et al, 2012). Dyf-7 mutations cause natural ML resistance in C. elegans and the parasite nematode H. contortus (Urdaneta-Marquez et al, 2014). Another important issue will be to explore the possible link between the expression of ABC transporters and the development of amphids in ML resistant parasites. Methods: The student will perform various phenotypic characterizations of C. elegans and H. contortus. He(she) will perform functional analysis of the transporters in situ in nematodes using fluorescent probes and inhibitors of the transporters. He will use genomic and transcriptomic data on C. elegans resistant to anthelmintics to identify possible markers of drug resistance in relation with the genes of interest.
Molecular and cellular biology, bioinformatics; confidence in English and French. The student will need to meet the registration requirement for UPS and McGill. The student should be mobile and will spent aproximally equal time in the 2 universities.
The student should be registered, in a co-tutelle agreement, in the PhD programs of both universities. Academic records need to be high to be acceptable for admission for both universities. The student will be responsible for any compulsory university fees applicable in Quebec (Canada) and France. In any semester, the student would only be required to pay fees at the university where he(she) would be resident during that semester (not at both universities). At McGill, a non-Canadian student may be eligible for a differential fee-waiver, which would result in the student being treated for university fees, while resident at McGill, as a domestic student. The student will follow the course program required for each University and established under the co-tutelle agreement. Funding: This project is jointly funded by McGill University and the French Institute of Agronomic Research, INRA. A salary award is available, to be paid through McGill, at the rate of CAD $21000 per year for 3 years. Travel indemnities on the basis 1 return trip (Canada/France)/year will apply (the student will be expected to apply for eligible travel support programs available at, or through, both universities). Currently, doctoral student awards are exempt from income taxes in Quebec and Canada. Enquiries: Interested qualified students should contact the Co-supervisors in French and/or English as soon as possible, with information on academic record, relevant experience and career objectives; and should consult at: http://www.mcgill.ca/parasitology/graduatestudies/admission for details on admission requirements and deadlines for submission, for January or September, 2017 commencement.
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