Position Summary: A post-doctoral position is available in the group of Dr. Milton Drott at the USDA-ARS Cereal Disease Lab and the Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul, MN. Our team is broadly interested in the evolution of factors impacting the development of Fusarium Head Blight (FHB) in cereals. Areas of inquiry include 1) Harnessing fungal interactions with wild grasses and associated microbial communities to mitigate disease in agroecosystems 2) Determining the evolution and role of fungal specialized metabolites in pathogenesis and 3) Establishing how a changing climate shifts ecological and evolutionary forces that maintain populations of Fusarium graminearum.
Projects addressing these areas will incorporate in vitro experimentation and bioinformatic analyses, the latter at times incorporating large-scale publicly available datasets. The long-term goal of the project is to identify genetic and ecological patterns that will inform existing efforts and offer new approaches to control FHB of cereals.
The successful candidate will design and perform experiments, keep detailed records, analyze, and synthesize data, present results at local and national meetings, and prepare manuscripts for publication.
The position offers opportunities to engage stakeholders and collaborate with multiple research groups at USDA-ARS, UMN, and other universities.
Job Duties: (80%) Research: design and perform experiments, keep detailed records, analyze, and synthesize data (15%) Publication and presentation of data: present results at local and national meetings, and prepare manuscripts for publication (5%) Career Development
Anticipated Salary Range: $55,000 - $58,000
Required Qualifications: Ph.D. in a Life Sciences field or related discipline such as genetics, biochemistry, molecular biology, plant pathology, evolutionary biology, genomics, or bioinformatics.
Published record of quality research in the relevant fields.
Experience with bioinformatic techniques and basic scripting.
Work with filamentous fungi, particularly with plant-microbe interactions.
Molecular biology wet lab skills, especially nucleic acid extraction/purification, qPCR, and fungal transformations.
Statistical analysis and interpretation of large molecular and/or genomic data sets.
Strong analytical skills and proven technical writing and presentation skills.
Willingness to work as part of a diverse team of scientists and stakeholders.
The University of Minnesota, founded in the belief that all people are enriched by understanding, is dedicated to the advancement of learning and the search for truth; to the sharing of this knowledge through education for a diverse community; and to the application of this knowledge to benefit the people of the state, the nation, and the world.