Date Posted
7 Oct 2024

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PhD Program
University of Kentucky

PhD position: seed biology focusing on dynamic cellular movment during fertilization and/or endosperm development

7 Oct 2024

NOTE: this position listing has expired and may no longer be relevant!

Position Description

A Ph.D. position is now available in seed biology at the University of Kentucky, focusing on dynamic cellular movement during plant fertilization and seed development. We use advance live-cell imaging technologies and cell marker lines to visualize real-time seed developmental processes occurring inside the maternal tissue (Kawashima et al. 2014 and Kawashima and Berger, 2015). The student will investigate cytoskeleton dynamics and its importance during fertilization and/or endosperm development. A basic molecular or cell biology background (knowledge and experience) is a must, but botany background is not required. An M.S. degree is not required for this position, either. Tuition, health care, and stipend will be fully covered by the department.

The University of Kentucky is located at the heart of Lexington, Kentucky, known as the “Horse Capital of the World”, with many nature reserves and parks within the city. The campus, airport, and residential area are within a 20 minute drive away.

More information about the lab:

The accepted applicant can begin the position starting in January or August 2017.

Selected publications related to this position:
• Gooh K, Ueda M, Aruga K, Park J, Arata H, Higashiyama T, Kurihara D. Live-cell imaging and optical manipulation of Arabidopsis early embryogenesis. Developmental Cell 34:242-51 2015.

• Kawashima T. and Berger F. Central cell nuclear position at the micropylar end is maintained by the balance of F-actin dynamics, but dispensable for karyogamy. Plant Reproduction 28:103-110, 2015

• Maruyama D., Völz R., Takeuchi H., Mori T., Igawa T., Kurihara D., Kawashima T., Tiedemann S., Ueda M., Itoh M., Masaaki U., Nishikawa S., Groß-Hardt R. and Higashiyama T. Rapid elimination of the persistent synergid through a cell fusion mechanism. Cell 161:907-918, 2015

• Kawashima T., Maruyama D., Shagirov M., Li J., Hamamura Y., Yelagandula R., Toyama Y., Berger F. Dynamic F-actin movement is essential for fertilization in Arabidopsis thaliana. eLife 2014;3:e04501, 2014

How to Apply

Please contact Dr. Tomokazu Kawashima ( with a single PDF file including a cover letter describing your research interest, a CV, and the contact information of at least two referees. More detailed information about the Ph.D. application procedure will be provided to the applicant through further communications. If you would like to start the program in January 2017, please contact Dr. Kawashima as soon as possible.

Position Category: Medical & Biological Sciences. Position Type: PhD Program. Position Tags: biology, plants, seeds, sexual reproduction, and agronomy. Salary: €10'000 - €20'000.