During the project „Metabolism of macrocyclic lactones in helminths“, loss-of-function Caenorhabditis elegans strains are used to identify specific Cytochrome P450 Monooxygenases (CYPs), that could play a role in resistance against macrocyclic lactones. Findings from these model organisms are transferred to naturally existing parasites of cattle.
The student assistant will assist in the development of a RNAi-protocol for the design of C. elegans CYPs-mutants that are used in in vitro assays to establish concentration response curves for different macrocyclic lactones. For this purpose, different C. elegans strains will be compared in development assays with different drug concentrations. Based on these results an existent RNAi-protocol will be adapted. Afterwards the student-assistant will perform in vitro assays with the focus on CYPs of the family 34A and 35A.
Furthermore, the student will gain experience in molecular and protein biochemical analysis. To enhance the differentiation of small strongyles from equines, the project „Comparative analysis of nematode communities in wild and domestic horses“ characterises small strongyles applying genomic and proteomic methods and extends the existing database. Subsequently, the results obtained from parasites of domestic horses will be applied to naturally infected horses, such as wild horses, zebras and additionally on hind-gut-fermenting animals (rhinoceros, elephants). Therefore, the student-assistant will have the opportunity to optimise protocols for DNA- and protein isolation, as well as PCR amplification. Depending on the individual motivation own studies can be conducted and published.
Areas of responsibility:
Basic laboratory techniques: DNA-isolation, PCR, and gel electrophoresis, coproscopy, preparation of agar-plates, solutions and bacterial cultures.
Work with C. elegans: Cultivation, evaluation of assays (depending on motivation: preparation of own assays).
Field: Obtaining faecal samples from wild horses/zebras
The successful applicant has to be enrolled for biology, molecular biology or veterinary medicine, has basic experience in laboratory work and can flexibly arrange the assistants work with their main studies.