Fully Funded PHD Scholarship on “Investigating the methane mitigation potential of LAB inoculated silages and direct-fed microbials”

PhD Fully Funded PHD Scholarship on “Investigating the methane mitigation potential of LAB inoculated silages and direct-fed microbials”

Deadline: 27 February 2023

I. Background

Methane originating from enteric fermentation in ruminants is the single largest source of anthropogenic agricultural emissions (approx. 60% of Irish and 76% of NZ agricultural emissions) and has a significant impact on global methane levels. The project will involve a multi-omics approach to determine key microbes and rumen fermentation pathways associated with a low residual methane emissions (RME) phenotype in beef cattle. The ability of exogenous Lactic Acid Bacteria strains to reduce methane production will be investigated via in vitro rumen fermentations and their performance in silage assessed. Strains showing best performance in both respects will be used in in vivo studies in cattle to assess their impact on methane emissions, milk production and milk quality over an entire lactation period. Selected bacterial strains will also be dosed into calves to determine if low methane yield phenotypes can be established.

The successful candidate will join a team with a track record of success in this research topic, and have access to research infrastructure. There will be opportunities throughout the programme for professional development training, conference attendance and international travel to expand your research interest.

II. Requirements

  • The candidate should be highly self-motivated with proven abilities in problem solving and data analysis. Applicants should have a primary degree (minimum 2.1) in an appropriate discipline (Microbiology, Physiology, Biotechnology, Molecular Biology or a related field).
  • A Masters degree would be a distinct advantage. Experience of data analysis and animal studies would be an advantage.
  • Prior experience of working in the lab environment is desirable.
  • The candidate must be highly proficient in both written and spoken English.

III. Award

  • This PhD is a joint research project between Teagasc Moorepark and the University College Cork. The successful candidate will be based in the Teagasc Research Centre at Moorepark, Co. Cork, Ireland.
  • The PhD successful candidate will be supervised by Prof. Catherine Stanton (Teagasc), Dr Michael O'Donovan (Teagasc), Prof. Paul Ross (UCC), and Prof. Colin Hill (UCC).
  • The successful candidate will be registered at University College Cork. The PhD will commence as soon as possible.
  • The scholarship funding is €24,500 per annum and includes a contribution to University fees of up to a maximum of €6,000 per annum and a flat rate stipend of €18,500 per annum and is tenable for 3 years.

IV. Application Procedure

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