University of Cambridge

MRC Postdoctoral Fellow

University of Cambridge

Cambridge, United Kingdom

MRC Postdoctoral Fellow
MRC Toxicology Unit, Cambridge
Reference: PU19151

The Medical Research Council Toxicology Unit is an internationally renowned institution focussed on the delivery of field-changing mechanistic insights into toxicology and disease. The Unit is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including super resolution microscopy and offers excellent opportunities for postdoctoral development. The Unit is part of the University of Cambridge; it is currently located at Leicester and will physically relocate to Cambridge in 2020.

We are looking to appoint an MRC Postdoctoral Fellow (PF) to work in the Laboratory of Mitochondria and cell death regulation following toxic injury:

We are seeking a highly-motivated postdoc candidate, to join Miguel Martins’s lab. Our work employs Drosophila as a model organism to better understand the consequences of mitochondrial dysfunction for the activation of adverse outcome pathways that lead to cellular and tissue damage. We employ multi-disciplinary approaches, including Drosophila genetics, quantitative fly behaviour analysis, RNAseq, metabolomics, quantitative proteomics, and microbiome analysis. We model how drug exposure and mitochondrial liabilities activate adverse outcome pathways. These adverse outcome pathways, in turn lead to cellular and tissue dysfunction.

Job description:
This project offers an exciting opportunity to study how mitochondrial toxicity can modify immune response

The successful candidate will explore the links between drug exposure, through off-target effects can cause mitochondrial defects and activate innate immunity as an adverse outcome pathway of toxicity. The working hypothesis that forms the basis of this project is that mitochondrial dysfunction acts in a non-cell autonomous manner to induce cell death through inter-organ communication. The organs that are the focus of this study are the brain, fat body and intestine.

Applicants must hold, or be close to completing, a PhD in a relevant discipline such as Neurobiology or Immunology together with experience in Drosophila genetics and biochemical techniques (protein expression/purification, western blotting); experience in drug toxicity screening using Drosophila is desirable. Proof of acceptance of at least one first author international peer-reviewed paper is expected.

Key Lab Publications:
Garrido-Maraver, al. Enhancing folic acid metabolism suppresses defects associated with loss of Drosophila mitofusin, Cell Death and Disease (2019)
Celardo, al. dATF4 regulation of mitochondrial folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism is neuroprotective, Cell Death and Differentiation (2017)
Celardo, al. Mitofusin-mediated ER stress triggers neurodegeneration in pink1/parkin models of Parkinson’s disease, Cell Death and Disease (2016)
Requejo-Aguilar, al. PINK1 deficiency sustains cell proliferation by reprogramming glucose metabolism through HIF1. Nature Communications 5, 1-9 (2014)
Tufi, al. Enhancing nucleotide metabolism protects against mitochondrial dysfunction and neurodegeneration in a PINK1 model of Parkinson’s disease. Nature Cell Biology (2014)
This is a three-year training and development position during which you will receive a range of formal and on-the-job training to ensure you receive the skills relevant to your role and to help support your future career

Fixed term: 3 years

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit:

Closing date: 06 November 2019

Informal enquiries are invited and can be directed to Miguel Martins at
If you have any queries regarding the application process please contact Rebecca Heatherley at

Once an offer of employment has been accepted, the successful candidate will be required to undergo a basic disclosure (criminal records check) check and a security check.

Please quote reference PU19151 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.
The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: PU19151