EU funded PhD position: The interplay between circadian rhythms and social organization in bumblebees

Temporal coordination is crucial for the organization of insect societies. The aim of this project is to understand the interplay between circadian clock genes and complex social behaviours in the model bumblebee Bombus terrestris. The circadian clock of bees influences complex behaviours such as time-compensated sun-compass navigation, time sensing, social synchronization, division of labour, as well as the response to agrochemicals. However, a genetic approach has not been attempted in order to definitively link the clock to these phenotypes. This PhD project will build on recent circadian transcriptomic analyses and development of methods (i.e., CRISPR-Cas9, RNAi) for manipulating genes in bees. We will examine the temporal and spatial expression patterns of clock genes in the bee brain under different environmental conditions and generate clock mutants to determine their effects on these complex behaviours.

This project is part of the CINChron – Comparative Insect Chronobiology project that is funded by Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network Program (ITN). CINChron offers:

• A generously funded PhD position (duration 36 months) starting in September/October 2018 (but possible starting dates earlier or later can be considered)
• High profile research projects in an Innovative Training Network Program
• Excellent facilities for research and education
• Extensive training with frequent network meetings (every 7-8 months), with courses and workshops delivered by international experts
• Intensive contacts with international collaborators & secondments in other research laboratories
• Collaborations with the commercial sector

I am looking for a candidate that:
• is highly motivated and talented
• is able to work in a multidisciplinary and international team
• is keen on intra-European mobility to perform PhD research abroad
• has good communication skills

For more details on CINChron and its eligibility rules visit
For more information on the research in our group please contact:
Guy Bloch (PhD)
Professor of Biology
Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem,
Jerusalem, 91904


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