Plant bioactives as modulators of the ageing process in Drosophila melanogaster

The Doctoral Programmes consist of an experimental project combined with a three-year interdisciplinary graduate course curriculum leading to a dissertation. Each doctoral researcher will be supervised by two professors from different faculties and will benefit from our Doctoral Development Programme. Seminars and courses are conducted in English; German language courses are offered for international students. Depending on the project selected and own qualifications, doctoral researches will receive a stipend and be eligible to register for one of the doctoral degrees offered at the Justus Liebig University Giessen.

Activities and responsibilities

In the present project, specific plant bioactives will be analyzed regarding their age-dependent effects especially in the context of the age-associated low-grade inflammation in the gut also known as “inflamm-ageing”. It will be investigated how these compounds affect different parameters associated with the ageing process including changes in the lifespan, transcriptomic changes as well as changes in the protein expression and the energy metabolism. As also the microbiome plays an essential role in the metabolization of these compounds the composition of the intestinal bacteria will be analyzed. Besides different wild-type fly lines also transgenic flies will be applied. The goal of the project is to identify plant-derived compounds that affect the lifespan of fruit flies and unravel the underlying mechanisms especially in the context of the process of inflamm-ageing.

Qualification profile

The PhD candidate should have successfully completed a scientific university course (MSc or Diploma degree) in Nutritional Sciences, Biology or another subject in the Life Science field. The candidate should have practical experience with molecular and cell biology related methods and ideally first experience in the handling of Drosophila melanogaster.Knowledge in the field of molecular biology and/or genetics would be an advantage. A high interest in scientific questions and good English language skills are mandatory.


Our research group "Nutrition and Immune System" has been recently established and mainly utilizes the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster as model system to answer nutrition-related research questions. Besides our scientific work we are basically involved in teaching in different BSc and MSc programmes at the faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Nutritional Sciences and Environmental Management.

Send application to

Please submit your application using our online system before March 04, 2019. Please direct any enquiries concerning the online application procedure to the GGL

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About International Giessen Graduate Centre For The Life Sciences

The GGL is an international graduate centre with a number of extraordinary young scientists and an above average percentage of female researchers (64%). Currently, we are in charge of 174 doctoral students of the faculties of psychology, biology, chemistry, sports science, medicine and veterinary medicine.

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