DEPARTMENT OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY OF BIOLOGICAL SYSTEMS, Team 2 LIVING MATERIALS, INSITUTE OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY PAS
NATIONAL SCIENCE CENTRE
Project title, type and project number
National Science Center Sonata Bis Project No. 2017/26/E/ST4/00041 entitled “MODULATION OF STABILITY OF VIRIONS – A FIGHT FOR AND AGAINST VIRUSES”, 13/2022
Dr Jan Paczesny
Viruses are not only our enemies, but also allies in number of applications. Thus, an affordable method for stabilization of viruses under harsh conditions is an issue that requires immediate response. The modulation of stability of viruses will be demonstrated on the example of bacteriophages (phages in short) – viruses, which hosts are bacteria. Bacteriophages are used as active ingredients in biocontrol agents, in phage therapies (against drug-resistant bacteria), as sensing elements of biosensors, carriers of genetic information in gene therapies or in phage display method. Importantly, some species (like bacteriophage MS2) are regarded as great models routinely utilized for studies on viruses attacking eukaryotic (also human) cells. Therefore, the work might have also impact on increase of stability of vaccines It is crucial as up to 80% of costs of vaccination programs is generated by the need of storage and transportation of vaccines in the low temperatures.
Capsid is part of the virion, where genetic information is stored. Capsid proteins are held together by non-covalent interactions, which are prone to be destabilized by external factors, i.e. slight increase of the temperature or osmotic pressure. The project aims at development of physicochemical means, which increase number of survivor virions upon exposition to external, deactivating factors.
Project aims at stabilizing of bacteriophages. The search of the appropriate stabilizing agents will begin with polymers, modified polymers and linkers. The stabilizing effect of developed agents will be tested primarily, but not exclusively, against elevated temperature and UV light. Developed agents will have low cytotoxicity. The project aims at explanation of mechanisms of phage deactivation and how developed agents counteract them.
From our experience the background in biotechnology would be appropriate, as it allows to adapt to both chemistry and biology tasks. However, applicants with other backgrounds will be also considered based on the possible input to the project (e.g. chemists, biologists, physicists, engineers or similar).
Number of vacancies
Key responsibilities include
PhD student will be involved in the realization of the project which is at the border between biology, physics and chemistry. This person will work with both viruses and bacteria. Moreover, understanding of physical chemistry will be necessary. It is expected that the enrolled candidate will be able to perform experiments independently, plan the workflow and participate in the decision making process.
1. Designing, planning and carrying out experimental work independently and under the supervision, maintaining regular research notes.
2. Scientific initiative and contribution through regular reporting and publishing, as well as presenting at group meetings, national and international conferences.
3. Cooperation with researchers, including communication with English-speaking colleagues 4. Providing help and supervision to junior members of the group.
5. Contribution to the efficient functioning of the lab including necessary organizational tasks.
Position in the project
PhD student - scholarship
3200 PLN / month
Position starts on
Maximum planned period of contract/stipend agreement
We offer 3200 PLN per month stipend financed from the NSC SONATA BIS Project No. 2017/26/E/ST4/00041. The position is for a period of 7 months.
Career development prospects at IPC PAS
The successful candidate will benefit in form of new knowledge and methods added to his/her toolbox. The project deals with biology, biotechnology, nanotechnology, physics and physical chemistry, so any profile of candidate will find some new knowledge to be gained upon realization of the project.
We plan to publish the results of the work in high impact factor journals.
The successful candidate will be able to take advantage of all programs in the IPC PAS, including Young Scientists of IPC PAS competition and Mobility of Young Scientists of IPC PAS competition.
Institute provides an opportunity to participate in ERASMUS+ programme.
Link to Euraxess websitesee website
More detailssee website
biology, biotechnology, chemistry, physics, nanotechnology or similar fields.
Scientific profile of a candidate
First Stage Researcher (R1)
Key assessment criteria
The Commission will take into account the following criteria:
The commission evaluates applications on a point scale.
How to Apply: Send application directly to email@example.com;
IMPORTANT: email title “Recruitment 13/2022”; (emails without this number will be not considered!)
Contact person: Jan Paczesny, firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for the settlement of the competition
Archival announcement. We would like to thank all candidates for their submitted applications.