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-PhD thesis, biodegradation of micropollutants in groundwater aquifers – biomolecular and geochemical approaches (f/m/x)

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Français - Anglais

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General information

Reference : UMR7517-GWEIMF-004
Workplace : STRASBOURG
Date of publication : Tuesday, March 03, 2020
Scientific Responsible name : Gwenaël Imfeld, DR-CNRS et Stéphane Vuilleumieur, Prof. Unistra
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 October 2020
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135,00 € gross monthly

Description of the thesis topic

We are looking for a creative, qualified and motivated young scientist for a PhD project at the interface of biological, chemical, and environmental sciences. Work will be conducted at research units LHyGeS (UMR 7517, Institut National des Sciences de l'Univers CNRS) and GMGM (UMR 7156, Institut National des Sciences Biologiques CNRS) in Strasbourg. in the context of the research project 3D-MICROPOL "Biodegradation of micropollutant in groundwater aquifers : coupling of geochemical and functional genomics approaches", award winner of the 80|PRIME CNRS interdisciplinary program in January 2020.
The PhD project will aim to develop new experimental approaches to follow transformation of micropollutants, for improved prediction of aquifer evolution, and monitoring and remediation purposes. The project will involve acquiring biomolecular, hydrochemical and isotopic data by laboratory and in situ studies. It will include the study of specific markers of microbial degradation for selected key micropollutants, and contribute to develop conceptual and modelling approaches for the processes involved.
Work to be performed will include:
• evaluation of micropollutant transformation in water and sediment samples (in the laboratory and in the field);
• application and development of approaches in microbiology and molecular biology (PCR, qPCR, high-throughput sequencing);
• application of methods of analytical chemistry and for analysis of stable isotopes;
• collaborative work in the context of an interdisciplinary project associating two laboratories;
• preparation of reports, seminar and conference presentations, and scientific publications.
Applications will require:
• a Master degree with multidisciplinary knowledge in chemistry and biology (delivered before September 2020, or obtained in 2018 or 2019);
• practical experience of several experimental techniques (ideally in molecular biology and in analytical chemistry);
• good command of oral and written communication, and of the English language;
• ability to interact and work in an interdisciplinary team comprising scientists, engineers and technical staff.
Complementary knowledge in pollutant transformation processes, analysis of stable isotopes, bioinformatics, statistics, or modelling approaches, as well as international experience, will represent additional assets.

Work Context

The Laboratory of Hydrology and Geochemistry (LHyGeS, UMR 7517 CNRS; https://lhyges.unistra.fr) focuses on flow and transport in continental hydrological systems. Research activities associate experimental and isotopic biogeochemistry with hydrology to understand processes at different scales and to develop transport models. LHyGeS conducts lab- and field-scale experiments to study transport of water and contaminants. The team of Gwenaël Imfeld focuses on the transformation of pollutants using compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA) in catchments, soils, and aquifers.
The team of Stéphane Vuilleumier in the research unit Molecular Genetics, Genomics, Microbiology (UMR 7156 CNRS, https://gmgm.unistra.fr) aims to understand the molecular basis of bacterial metabolism of different pollutants, and to characterise microbial communities at polluted sites, by applying functional genomics approaches.
Research at University of Strasbourg covers all areas of science, and encourages interdisciplinary and international collaborations. Located at the heart of Europe in a trinational region of dynamic economic activity, Strasbourg is a pioneer city in terms of environmental awareness in France, and a very pleasant place to live in.
We offer salary and social benefits according to French public sector regulations. Please send your application jointly to Gwenaël Imfeld (imfeld@unistra.fr; https://www.lhyges.unistra.fr/IMFELD-Gwenael) and Stéphane Vuilleumier (vuilleumier@unistra.fr, https://gmgm.unistra.fr/index.php?id=6487), by email and as a single pdf file including letter of motivation, CV, copies of certificates, and the names and contact information of potential referees.
Closing date for applications is April 31, 2020. Preferred starting period will be October 2020.

Constraints and risks

No specific contraints.

Additional Information

We are looking for a creative, qualified and motivated young scientist for a PhD project at the interface of biological, chemical, and environmental sciences. Work will be conducted at research units LHyGeS (UMR 7517, Institut National des Sciences de l'Univers CNRS) and GMGM (UMR 7156, Institut National des Sciences Biologiques CNRS) in Strasbourg. in the context of the research project 3D-MICROPOL "Biodegradation of micropollutant in groundwater aquifers : coupling of geochemical and functional genomics approaches", award winner of the 80|PRIME CNRS interdisciplinary program in January 2020.

The PhD project will aim to develop new experimental approaches to follow transformation of micropollutants, for improved prediction of aquifer evolution, and monitoring and remediation purposes.

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