PhD Studentships in Evolutionary Systems Biology Group, Ghent University, Belgium

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The Evolutionary Systems Biology lab of the Plant Systems Biology department at VIB/Ghent University is seeking two talented PhD students to work on the modeling of lateral root development in Arabidopsis thaliana and its evolution.

Project description
The goal of the Evolutionary Systems Biology lab is to understand how plant developmental systems work and how they evolve. The Arabidopsis root system is in many ways an ideal model system to study developmental processes in plants. Roots have a simple morphology and a relatively small number of cell types, and they exhibit all developmental stages simultaneously. They can be efficiently transformed and chemically perturbed and due to their near transparency, they offer unmatched opportunities to observe the molecular phenotypes of such treatments. The development of lateral root organs is one of the research foci at the Plant Systems Biology department. We are looking for a PhD student to reverse engineer the lateral root initiation (LRI) process and its interface with hormone signaling and cell cycle processes from molecular and morphological data. We are also looking for a PhD student to study the impact of duplication and functional divergence of developmental regulators on the evolution of LRI and other developmental processes. The project will initially be focused on Aux/IAAs and ARFs, two classes of transcriptional regulators that play important role in auxin responses and plant development.


Please e-mail your CV with the contact details of two references and a letter of motivation to Dr. Steven Maere ( steven.maere[ at ] ). For further information, visit us at

VIB is a world-class non-profit research institute in Flanders, Belgium with 1100 employees and excellent facilities. The Plant Systems Biology department is located in Ghent, a beautiful and vibrant city in the heart of Europe, 30 min from Brussels, 2 hours form Paris, London, Amsterdam and Cologne.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure the above information is current and correct. However, applicants should contact the appropriate administering body before making an application, as details do change frequently.


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