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Genetics & Molecular Medicine

The relationship of diet and microbiome in age-related diseases: a twin based study

Research Division: Department of Twin Research & Genetic Epidemiology, Division of Genetics & Molecular Medicine

First supervisor: Dr Claire Steves

Second supervisors: Professor Tim Spector

Sponsor: King's College London

Eligibility: Home/EU and international applications (see eligibility details below)

Duration: 3 years

Stipend: from £15,000 p/a

Start date: October (negotiable)

Application closing date: Until a suitable applicant has been found

Reference: 2015/GMM/S08

Project description

Seeking highly motivated early career researchers for a PhD studentship in human microbiome/nutrition at the Department of Twin Research & Genetic Epidemiology, King’s College London, collaboration with the Dept of Nutrition at KCL. The Department has close links with Divisional and other Research Departments within King’s College, as well as many external Research Organisations.

The TwinsUK cohort of 12,000 is probably the most intensively studied group in the world with a wide range of omic technologies already measured (www.twinsuk.ac.uk). Our group of over 70 produces over 80 papers per year and is one of the UK leading centres in microbiome research and has measured over 2000 twins with gut microbiota data. We have already published on genetic influences on gut microbes and on food preferences in twins. We have 15 years of dietary FFQ data and wish to link this with the microbiome data and common diseases and traits of aging.

We wish to exploit over 12 years of dietary data (FFQs) in the twins to explore how twins with different or discordant diets - such as vegetarian or low fat or fibre differ from their co-twin for gut microbes or a range of 450 metabolites and other biomarkers related to health and aging. The plan will be to use this data to design dietary interventions.

The successful candidates should have at least a BSc or equivalent in the areas of biological or mathematical sciences with ideally some training in a nutrition or microbiology related field. The project’s main focus will be on quantitative analyses of dietary data and microbiome within twin pairs and will involve statistical analyses. The position will be based at King’s College London on the St Thomas’ Campus.

Eligibility

The Studentship is open to UK & EU candidates. The funding also covers tuition fees at the EU (Home) rate. Applications from outside the EU are welcome provided candidates can source funding to cover the overseas fees.

How to apply

To apply, please send to Dr Claire Steves your CV, details of two academic referees and a supporting statement outlining why you are applying. 

Further information

Informal enquiries can be made in the first instance to Dr Claire Steves  or  Professor Tim Spector, King's College London.

 
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