Drug resistance in malaria infections. Analyzing longitudinal amplicon sequencing data or developing mechanistic within-host models.

A postdoc position is available in the lab of Nicole Mideo, in the Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto. The position is part of an NIH-funded study of drug resistance in malaria parasites. The aim of the project is to use longitudinal amplicon sequencing data to look for phenotypic signatures of resistance in malaria infections, i.e., variants with increasing relative abundance over the course of treatment.

The successful candidate will be involved in developing approaches for analysing (and ultimately analysing) relative abundance time series data. The ideal candidate will have experience analysing such data in any context. A PhD in ecology, evolution, biology or a related field is required.

Collaborators on this grant have been collecting data from malaria clinics in sub-Saharan Africa, so that we can contribute to identifying drug resistant parasites and tracking their spread globally. One key challenge in these areas is that most infections harbour multiple parasite genotypes, and when resistance is rare (and its underlying genetics unknown) its effects are hard to detect. More background for this project can be found in some of our previously published papers, including an opinion piece outlining the challenge of within-host diversity as well as potential approaches for overcoming it (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1471492213000767) and an analysis of previously collected data (https://academic.oup.com/emph/article/2016/1/21/2802531).

The position is available for 2 years, subject to annual review. The expected start date is July 1, 2018, but there is flexibility on that.

To apply, please send (1) a cover letter outlining your previous experiences that make you suited for this position as well as your research and career goals (2) a CV, and (3) contact information for three people who can provide a reference via email to nicole.mideo@utoronto.ca.

The University of Toronto is a leading academic institution with over 60 faculty members specialising in ecology and evolution. Strong links exist between the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and the Royal Ontario Museum, the Centre for Global Change Science, the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, the School of the Environment, the University network of leading academic research hospitals and research groups with provincial and federal government agencies. The University of Toronto is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas. Toronto is also a vibrant and cosmopolitan city; one of the most desirable in the world in which to work and live.

University of Toronto, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Closing date
May 15th, 2018
Posted on
April 9th, 2018 22:02
Last updated
April 9th, 2018 22:02