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Student project: “Development of a metabolic model for a fungal production strain”

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BRAIN AG is an independent and privately owned research corporation located in the Rhine-Neckar area in Germany that discovers and develops novel bioactive natural compounds and proprietary enzymes for its partners and customers in the chemical and pharmaceutical as well as in the food and cosmetics industries. BRAIN AG, a European leader in the field of White (industrial) Biotechnology, was founded in 1993 and currently employs >100 highly qualified personnel.

BRAIN AG offers an opportunity for highly motivated students or graduates to gain hands-on research experience during a practical training / integrated internship ('Praktisches Studiensemester').

Student project: “Development of a metabolic model for a fungal production strain”

Motivation and Background
Microorganisms are emerging as cell factories for producing variety of chemicals and bio-molecules of socio-economic importance. Naturally occurring microorganisms often need to be engineered so as to increase their productivity. Efficient metabolic engineering requires a detailed understanding of the production pathway as well as a global understanding of the interdependencies of all pathways in the metabolic network.
In an ongoing research and development project BRAIN AG is working with a novel fungal producer strain. The genome sequence of the strain is available and a first draft model has already been generated. In addition, a metabolic model of a closely related fungus is available.

Overall goal of the project is to improve the metabolic model for predicting effects of gene deletions and changes in growth conditions in the novel fungal producer strain. To this end physiological data generated within an ongoing research project is already available. However, if in the course of the project required, additional data can be generated using small scale (96-well, 24-well) or bioreactor (2L) cultivations. In addition, gene expression data (RNA-Seq) will become available and thus can be implemented. We will align the new model with public databases using modelBorgifier, a tool that we have developed in-house for this purpose (Sauls and Buescher, Bioinformatics, 2014) in order to facilitate manual curation steps.

Learning opportunities
The candidate will work within, and interact with, a team of scientists experienced in experimental as well as computational approaches and thereby get a unique opportunity to learn/improve skills within both disciplines.

Applications for internships of 6 months or longer are preferred. As a suitable candidate, you have background knowledge in biology, particularly microbiology and biochemistry, as well as some experience in Matlab/Octave, relevant wet lab experiences are beneficial. You are enrolled as student for the duration of the project. You communicate easily in English and have a good command of the German language. Please submit your complete resume including letter(s) of recommendation and information regarding your scheduled practical training requirements to hr@brain-biotech.de.

Contact detail

How to apply:
Please send your  completeapplication documents to: hr@brain-biotech.de
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Job profile

Working hours
Contract duration
Type of job
Internship & Working student
Work experience
job experience is not required
Germany (Hessen)
Working place
64673 Zwingenberg
Area of expertise
Biotechnology, Biology & Life Sciences