Postdoctoral fellowship at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, USA

Scholarship: Fully funded
Degree: Ph.D
Nationality: International Students
Location: USA
Application deadlines: Open

Scholarship Description:

Peijun Ma’s group at St Jude Children’s Research Hospital is seeking two postdoctoral fellows. Our group will use bacterial single-cell genomics and transcriptomics approaches to study antibiotic resistance and drug resistance. Dr Peijun Ma’s previous research achievements include the development of bacterial single-cell RNA sequencing (Ma et al., Cell, 2023; DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2023.01.002) and the exploration of the evolution of antibiotic resistance in Gram-negative bacterial pathogens (Ma et al., eLife, 2021; https:/ / /

The emergence of antibiotic and drug resistance has become one of the greatest challenges to human health. One of the major problems in our current research on antibiotic resistance and drug resistance is the characterisation of bacteria as whole populations. However, resistant and drug-resistant clones are usually derived from single cells. The heterogeneity of bacterial populations is not well characterised and the mechanisms that lead to this heterogeneity are not yet clear. To address this issue, Peijun Ma’s group will use an innovative bacterial single-cell RNA sequencing technique to study bacterial drug-induced heterogeneity at the single-cell level. In addition, we will use bacterial single-cell genomics and transcriptomics to study gut microbiomics to understand the impact of the host microenvironment on the evolution of antibiotic resistance and resistance, particularly in paediatric patients with recurrent bacterial infections. We believe this work will provide innovative insights into bacterial heterogeneity and lead to the discovery of drug targets for the treatment of bacterial infections associated with antibiotic resistance and susceptibility.

Dr Peijun Ma received her PhD from Vanderbilt University, USA in 2014. During her PhD, she worked on the microbial biological clock. After completing her PhD, she joined the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard University, where she studied the evolution of antibiotic resistance in bacterial pathogens under the supervision of Dr Deborah Hung and developed the first high-throughput bacterial single-cell sequencing technology.

The mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance research into the treatment and prevention of childhood malignancies. While childhood cancer has been St. Jude’s primary focus since its inception, St. Jude plans to develop world-class research programmes in major infectious diseases. Over the next five years, St. Jude will increase its investment in endemic infectious diseases and expand its research facilities in this area. With the institution’s ongoing work and future investments, St. Jude will establish a world-leading paediatric epidemic infectious disease research programme.

St. Jude offers a world-class research environment, research technology and equipment support. Since 2005, St. Jude has been ranked by The Scientist Magazine as one of the top 10 places to work in science, and was ranked number one in 2006. The university has a higher percentage of “highly cited scientists” than its peers.

 Available Subjects:

  • To study drug-induced bacterial heterogeneity and its impact on drug resistance in bacterial pathogens.
  • To investigate the impact of intrinsic bacterial heterogeneity (e.g. cell cycle and bacterial intercellular communication) on the development of drug resistance and resistance.
  • Use bacterial single-cell genomics and transcriptomics to study gut microbes.
  • Development of innovative single-cell sequencing technologies to study bacterial heterogeneity at the single-cell and genome-wide level.

Eligibility criteria:

  • We are looking for highly motivated postdoctoral researchers to establish and explore the emerging field of microbial single cell genomics. Candidates should have a background in molecular biology, microbiology, microbiome research or other related fields.

Application Procedure:

  1. Please send your CV and cover letter to Peijun Ma: [email protected]