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Prospective graduate students should contact faculty directly.

Assistant Professor or Associate Professor – Advanced Nutrigenomics of Bioactive Phytochemicals

The Plants for Human Health Institute (PHHI) is seeking applicants to conduct research in genomics of extra-nutritional phytoactive compounds, (e.g. bioactive chemical compounds present in plant-based foods) with a focus on the modulating effects of these dietary bioactive constituents on human/animal gene activation and expression. The successful candidate will develop a transdisciplinary research program to investigate how bioactive phytochemicals and their interacting, potentiating mixtures modify gene expression, and lead to synthesis of specific health-relevant proteins/compounds/targets that benefit human health and wellness.

Research may examine how dietary bioactives influence human genes, and how genetic variability conditions human response to dietary phytochemical constituents. Candidates are expected to conduct research in areas such as metabolic phenotyping, metagenomic technologies to analyze associations between diet and health status, genomics and gene expression, and/or the potential of artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI-ML) to link precision agriculture to precision nutrition.

The incumbent will interface with a complementary team of faculty to explore hypothesis-driven studies targeting specific phytochemical-human metabolic and phytochemical-human disease pathways.

  • An ideal candidate will have a PhD in Food Sciences, Nutrition, Genomics, Metabolomics emphasis in chemistry/phytochemistry, gene activation, etc.
  • Expertise in genomics of bioactive, extra-nutritional phytochemical compounds (phytoactives) focusing on the modulating effects of dietary bioactive constituents on human/animal gene activation and expression
  • Expertise in gene modulation; characterization of gene activation and subsequent expression by identification of transcription factors and mRNA
  • Experience in metabolic phenotyping and metagenomic techniques
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills

This position is located in Kannapolis, NC

Learn more and apply here:

Research Scholar

Dr. Massimo Iorizzo’s lab is looking for a highly motivated Research Scholar position that will design, and perform advanced genetic/genomic research studies with an emphasis on quality and health-protective traits, including enhanced texture, size, chemical composition (pH, Sugars, Organic Acids), concentrations and profiles of phytoactive compounds. The person will coordinate and/or conduct multiple, concurrent assignments or a multi-faceted project, including the development of independent research objectives. The person will work as part of a laboratory team, will interact closely with collaborating laboratories, and must be able to coordinate activities and reports within a diverse team of individuals. The candidate must have a strong background in quantitative genetics and motivation and proficiency for publications.

The position will be responsible for writing publications, preparation of technical reports, manuscripts, and presentations, as well as contribute to grant proposal development to support research funding initiatives. The position will assist/participate in PHHI and University sponsored programs. The position will also assist in the training and mentoring of post-doc, undergraduate, and graduate students. Crops of interest in this project will include blueberry and carrot.

  • An ideal candidate will have a PhD in plant breeding and genetics or related field with at least 3 years of experience as post-doc.
  • Strong background in quantitative genetics, (QTL and GWAS), QTL interaction, and marker prediction analysis, in diploid and polyploid plants is essential
  • Experience with haplotype-based GWAS
  • Be familiar with bioinformatics analysis needed for sequence alignment, SNP and variant call, haplotype comparison, candidate gene analysis, RNA seq
  • Experience in population genetic analysis (e.g. phylogenetic, PCA, structure, nucleotide diversity) and linkage map construction in diploid and polyploid species
  • Proficiency to publish findings in well-recognized peer-reviewed journals
  • Ability to manage more than one project in a rapid and smooth manner while being able to interact and communicate with research personnel from diverse disciplines
  • Familiar with molecular biology techniques (DNA, RNA extraction, PCR)

This position is located in Kannapolis, NC

Learn more and apply here:

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