PhD position – Characterization of the genomic variation of a local cattle breed using whole-genome sequencing data

Country: Switzerland;

Deadline: 15.01.2018



The objective of the PhD project is to generate and analyze whole-genome sequencing data of a local dual-purpose (meat and milk) cattle breed in order to characterize genomic variation that segregates within that population. The successful candidate will carry out population-genetic analyses to identify individuals that reflect the haplotype diversity of the current breeding population. The genome of those individuals will be sequenced at medium to high coverage to discover polymorphic sites. Individual-level sequencing read data of animals from two subpopulations that were formed several generations ago will be collected in order to quantify the differentiation between the populations at nucleotide resolution. The PhD candidate will be responsible for the analysis of pedigree, genotype and individual level sequence read data. Strategies will be developed to consider putatively deleterious and beneficial variants for improving the breeding program of local breeds with small effective and actual population size.

The successful candidate should have a strong interest in animal breeding and genetics, statistical genomics and/or computational biology. The PhD student will be part of a young and dynamic team that enjoys to work with big genomic data from animal populations. Applicants should hold a MSc degree in agricultural science, animal science, genetics, computational biology, bioinformatics or related disciplines. Affinity to animal breeding, statistics, bioinformatics and computational biology is required. The writing of scientific papers and participation in international conferences requires good knowledge of English.

We offer working in an exciting project carried out in a newly established group at ETH Zurich equipped with excellent computational, lab and experimental facilities. Supervision will be close, but allow for independent work. Scientific writing and active participation in international scientific conferences is very much encouraged and supported. The duration of the position is three years and the position is available from March 2018 (negotiable).

We look forward to receiving your online application including a cover letter that demonstrates your motivation and suitability for the position, a curriculum vitae with complete academic record, copies of Bachelor and Master degrees, and name and contact information of two references until January 15, 2018. Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered.

For further information regarding the advertised position or about ETH Zurich in general, please visit our website or contact Prof. Hubert Pausch at hubert.pausch[at] (no applications).


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