Biological Sciences Postdoctoral Scholar (EcoPod) - 91335
Organization: JG-Joint Genome Institute
In this exciting role, you will perform research on plant-microbe interactions with an emphasis on the role of plant genes on microbial community composition. Your responsibilities include identifying mutants in the model grass Brachypodium distachyon that affect production and/or exudation of compounds thought to influence microbiome community composition and characterizing the effect of these mutations on microbiome composition and function. The project will test interactions at two scales. First, at a small scale using small growth chambers that enable non-destructive imaging and sampling EcoFABs (https://eco-fab.org/) of roots and microbes as a tool to rapidly test hypotheses. Second, at a larger, more field relevant scale, using chambers called EcoPODs that will allow for more realistic growth conditions and spatial studies. Additional available resources include a collection of B. distachyon mutants containing over 2M sequenced mutations, a robotic system to manipulate and maintain EcoFABs during experiments, fluorescently labeled bacterial strains that are part of a synthetic community used by several projects at Lawrence Berkeley Lab. Methods to study plant-microbe interactions will include 16S community profiling, metabolomics, and fluorescence microscopy. You will store and organize results for presentation and viewing by project team members and the wider scientific community and prepare results for publication in scientific journals.
What You Will Do:
• Identify genes that may affect root exudation.
• Identify mutants in these genes in the model grass Brachypodium distachyon from existing collections of sequenced mutants.
• Characterize the effect of these mutations on the root microbiome composition and function.
• Determine the fate of transgenic microbes in the soil and rhizosphere over time.
• Quantify the movement of transgenic microbes in the soil and rhizosphere.
• Use 16S community profiling to characterize microbial community composition.
• Use metabolomics to characterize root-microbe interactions.
• Store and organize results for presentation and viewing by JGI staff, collaborators, and the wider scientific community.
• Interact with multi-institution project team members to ensure efficient communication and completion of analysis projects.
• Write results up for publication.
Additional Responsibilities as needed:
• Work with group members and/or outside collaborators on additional plant-microbe projects.
• Create transgenic plants to test specific hypotheses.