Ledig stilling ved Nord universitet

ERC-linked PhD fellowship in mitochondrial epigenetics in fish (Research fellow)

Deadline: 20.09.2020


Nord University

Global challenges demand new insight, innovative solutions and local legitimacy. Nord University is a young university with strong regional ties and a global perspective. We are committed to delivering relevant educational programmes and research, with a focus on blue and green growth, innovation and entrepreneurship, and welfare, health and education. Nord University has 11,000 students and 1,400 employees at nine study locations in central and northern Norway.

Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture (FBA) educates people with the aim of promoting sustainable and innovative development to meet global challenges in food production, climate and environment. The faculty is an international arena for education, research and knowledge dissemination, with employees and students from 25 different countries. The faculty offers a PhD in Aquatic Biosciences. FBA has 900 students and 160 employees in Bodø and Steinkjer. The professional community is organised into the following divisions: Aquaculture, Ecology, Genomics and Animal Science, Production and Welfare.

Read more: www.nord.no/en/fba

About the position

A three-year PhD fellowship in mitochondrial epigenetics in fish is available at the Faculty of Biosciences and Aquaculture, Nord University (Bodø, Norway).

FBA invites applications from outstanding candidates for a three-year PhD fellowship within the project Innovative Epigenetic Markers for Fish Domestication (EPIFISH), which is funded by the EU H2020 excellence programme ERC consolidator grant. For more information please visit the EPIFISH website. The project leader, professor Jorge Fernandes is affiliated with the Genomics Division at the FBA.

Project summary

Aquaculture is the fastest growing food production sector in the world, since there is an increasing demand for fish protein to feed a growing global population, which cannot be met by fisheries. In order to ensure the sustainability of this sector it is critical to domesticate and selectively improve growth of the major commercial fish species. The overall aim of EPIFISH is to ascertain the role of epigenetics in fish domestication using the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) as model species.

This PhD project will focus on mitochondrial epigenetics. Muscle growth is closely linked to mitochondria, since their primary function is the generation of energy. In fish, it is currently unknown how epigenetic changes in mitochondrial DNA affect muscle growth. Hence, the main objectives of this timely project are : i) to profile the main DNA modifications (e.g., 5mC and 6mA) in mitochondrial DNA, ii) to identify specific DNA modifications correlated with growth rate, and iii) to determine if these epigenetic changes are heritable.

The project outcomes will provide novel mechanistic insights into the role of mitochondrial epigenetics in growth improvement during fish domestication. Moreover, the identification of potential epigenetic markers of growth will have a major impact on aquaculture biotechnology, since they will enable the development of epigenomic selection as a new feature in future selective breeding programmes.

Qualification requirements

At the time of taking up the appointment, the candidate should have completed an MSc degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline, namely epigenetics, genomics, mitochondrial genetics, fish physiology and biosciences.

This challenging project requires a highly motivated, creative and ambitious applicant with an excellent academic record and the ability to collaborate with other members of a multidisciplinary team.

Hands-on experience in next-generation sequencing, epigenetic analysis, bioinformatics, in vitro and in vivo functional assays, and genome-editing are advantageous for the position.

Proficiency in oral and written English is essential and must be documented either by the Norwegian Higher Education Entrance Qualification or internationally recognised certificates, such as TOEFL, IELTS, APIEL or similar. Proficiency in oral and written English is essential and knowledge of a Scandinavian language is beneficial for the position.

Grade average of B or better (or equivalent score) both for the programme in total and the master’s thesis.

The successful candidate will join the PhD programme in Aquatic Biosciences at Nord University and is expected to complete the study within the three-year project period.

The candidate should fulfill the admission requirements and participate in the training component stipulated in regulations of the PhD program. Application for admission to the program must be submitted within three months after taking up the position. For admission requirements and regulations, see our web page.

We offer

The annual salary for doctoral researchers (code 1017) is set at wage level 54, LR 20, NOK 479.600,- in the Norwegian State Salary Scale. Suitably qualified candidates may be placed in code 1378.

  • Advantages within the Government Pension Fund for borrowing, insurance and pension.
  • Creative and collegial working environment
  • A workplace with steady progressive development
  • Flexible working hours
  • Active university sports team

General information

The person who is appointed must abide by the applicable laws, agreements, and directives. The responsibilities and duties associated with the position may change with future reorganization at Nord University.

The public sector workforce is expected to reflect the diversity of the population in general. Nord University therefore encourages qualified candidates with disabilities, gaps in their CV, immigrant backgrounds or different life experience to apply. Nord University practices moderate allocation according to gender quotas in accordance with the Basic Agreement for State Employees.

If applicants indicate they have disabilities or gaps in their CV, their details may be used anonymously for the purposes of governmental annual review

Contact information

For further information about the position, please contact:

Questions related to the application process should be addressed to the office manager Irene Stork (e-mail: [email protected]; telephone +47 75 51 74 42).


Applications must be submitted electronically by 20.09.2020.

Applicants for this position are required to provide the following:

  • Motivation letter outlining the candidate’s suitability for this position, relevant experience and how she/ he will contribute to the successful implementation of EPIFISH (maximum 1 page);
  • A research proposal of a potential research project (maximum 2 pages);
  • Curriculum vitae, including a list of publications (maximum 3 pages);
  • Certified copies of academic degree transcripts and any other relevant qualifications;
  • Contact details for at least two referees.
  • Signed consent form PhD (if relevant)

All documents must be uploaded as attachments to the electronic application form.

It is the applicant's responsibility to submit the complete documentation within the deadline.

After the application period has expired a list of applicants will be published. Note that, in special cases, the identity of particular applicants to a position may be made public even when that applicant has requested that their application be processed confidentially. Applicants requesting an exemption from publication of their identity must explain their reasons for doing so in their application. In this case, advance notice will be given in the event of a decision to make any information about the applicant public.

Refnr. 30073229

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