A funded PhD studentship on “Early-life environment effects on ageing in European badgers” is available at the University of Leeds, UK, supervised by Dr Hannah Dugdale and co-supervised by Dr Amanda Bretman. The PhD is in collaboration with Prof David Macdonald and Dr Chris Newman at the University of Oxford.
This PhD will address why individuals differ in the point and rate at which they senesce – senescence being the loss of function with age, from the cellular to the organism level. Our understanding of the factors that affect senescence is limited: Within a species, are some individuals better able to buffer against senescence due to physiological adaptations (such as greater oxidative damage resistance and longer protective chromosome caps – termed telomeres), environmental effects (e.g. born in years with high food availability), or social conditions (e.g. low levels of intra-sexual competition)? This PhD will investigate these key questions, using data from a natural population of European badgers subject to variable environmental and social conditions. This will generate critical knowledge that will improve our understanding of how and why some individuals live longer, healthier lives than others, improving our understanding of animal health and informing conservation management decisions. Further information is available here: https://hannahdugdale.wordpress.com/opportunities
Funding: The studentship covers UK/EU tuition fees and a stipend at RCUK rates (~£14,296 pa) for 3 years full-time. Applicants from the UK/EU are eligible; international tuition fee payers are not eligible. Deadline: Friday, April 29, 2016. To apply: http://www.fbs.leeds.ac.uk/postgraduate/researchdegree.php