PhD student fellowship in Belgium ~

30 de marzo de 2012

PhD student fellowship in Belgium


"Evolutionary ecophysiological study of synergisms between UV stress
and heavy metals"
We offer a four year fully funded PhD student fellowship (+ 1 predoctoral
year depending on the candidate's level) within the research groups of
Robby Stoks and Luc De Meester at the Laboratory of Aquatic Ecology,
Evolution and Conservation at the University of Leuven, Belgium

The candidate will carry out a coordinated project (together with
toxicologist Erik Smolders of the department of Earth and Environmental
Sciences) to study the synergism between UV stress and heavy metals
focusing on (i) the physiological-mechanistic underpinnings and (ii)
micro-evolutionary changes of vulnerability of Daphnia to these stressors
and (iii) resulting eco-evolutionary dynamics with regard to vulnerability
to predation. The PhD project will therefore combine different approaches:
physiological assays of defense mechanisms, candidate gene expression
analysis, resurrection ecology and experimental evolution, and predation
experiments. There will be strong international collaboration with (i)
the group of Prof. Ruben Sommaruga (Laboratory of Aquatic Photobiology
and Plankton Ecology, Univ. Innsbruck) and (ii) the group of Prof. Susana
Agusti (Department of Global Change Research, Mediterranean Institute
for Advanced Studies) for the experimental work on UV stress and the
resurrection ecology study.

Candidates should have:
- Obtained their Master Degree outside (!) the EER. [EER students
 willing to apply for a national grant are encouraged to contact
 us as well.]
- Solid knowledge of evolutionary ecology.

- Previous experience in (or at least a strong willingness to learn)
 ecophysiology and molecular ecology (qPCR).
- Strong language skills: high level of written and spoken English
 absolutely required.
- Full time dedication to pursuing PhD studies.

Applications should consist of  a curriculum vitae, a one-page cover
letter explaining your scientific background and experience, as well as
your interests, and the email address of 2 academic references who can
supply letters of recommendation upon our request.

Applications and informal requests for additional information should be
sent to: Robby Stoks ( and Luc De Meester

Leuven ( is a pretty, historical university
city with a very high and pleasant standard of living.  The historic
university, founded in 1425, has a top research and teaching standard

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