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PhD position in Plant - Pathogen Interaction

PhD position (TVL-E13, 65%) available (3 years)
at the University of Tübingen, Centre for Plant Molecular Biology (ZMBP), Institute for Plant Biochemistry, starting as soon as possible.
The ‘Centre for Plant Molecular Biology’ (ZMBP, is based in a totally new, well-equipped building and comprises four institutes where about 200 scientists work within the diverse fields on the top level of plant molecular biology. Thus, we can offer a great pool of tools and knowledge to carry out excellent work.
At the ‘Institute of Plant Biochemistry’ we work on plant – pathogen interactions and study plant innate immunity. Plants perceive molecular structures, known as microbe-associated molecular patterns (MAMPs) or damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs), via highly specific pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) and initiate downstream signalling leading to defence and resistance reactions.
The offered positon will be part of a project about the plant – plant interplay between the plant parasite Cusucta reflexa and its susceptible and resistant host plants. C. reflexa has a broad host spectrum and can cause severe crop damage. Cultivated tomato represents one of the few resistant plants responding with a resistance reaction and typical plant stress responses (ox-burst, ethylene, Ca2+ induction), comparable to those observed after an attack by other, e.g. microbial, pathogens.
The aim of the project will be the purification and analysis of the C. reflexa extracts and the identification of defence triggering substances. In preliminary studies we could purify a ~2 kDa glycol-peptide which has to be analysed in depth for its sequence, structure and biological function.
A further goal will be studying the molecular resistance mechanisms of tomato. In preliminary work we could genetically map two loci within the tomato genome important for C. reflexa recognition and the defence responses. While we could already identify one gene encoding a PRR, resistance related gene(s) of the other locus remain to be identified. Further mapping work and cloning strategies will be necessary to decipher genes important for tomato defence towards the plant parasite Cuscuta reflexa.
The following technical skills are required and previous knowledge for your successful application is of advantage:
  • basic molecular biological and biochemical techniques (e.g. PCR, cloning, genetic mapping, AFLP, Western-blot, immunoprecipitation)
  • bioassays related to plant defence (e.g. MAPK activation, measurements of ox-burst, ethylene; expression-analysis of marker genes)
  • analytical and purification techniques (chromatography, FPLC, HPLC, LC-MS/MS)
The University of Tübingen strongly encourages applications of qualified female scientists. Qualified, disabled applicants will receive preference over equally qualified, nondisabled applicants.
Please send your application including your CV and a motivation letter via e-mail to:            


Art des Bewerbungszugangs
via e-mail

Kontakt für Bewerbungen
Dr. Markus Albert
Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen
ZMBP - Institut für Pflanzenbiochemie
Auf der Morgenstelle 32
72076 Tübingen
phone +49 7071-2976669


Details der Stellenanzeige

Befristete Anstellung
Berufserfahrung nicht vorausgesetzt
Deutschland (Baden-Württemberg)
72076 Tübingen
Biologie & Life Sciences