Three PhD projects available for start Oct 2018

Three PhD projects are available in my lab or in collaboration with my lab funded by the White Rose BBSRC Mechanistic Biology Doctoral Training Partnership. See the links below for more details and information on how to apply, and please contact me with any queries.

Come and join us and explore plant – environment interactions!

How does the circadian clock regulate disease resistance?

Dynamics of the soil microbiome during drought

Dissecting quantitative variation in the plant circadian clock


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CyVerse UK

GARNet and CyVerseUK are organising a workshop to provide hands-on training for the software tools that the CyVerseUK grant has developed (

These tools are designed to be used with data from any experimental system so researchers who work in any organism are encouraged to attend.

The new software tools are for the analysis of RNAseq, GWAS, gene expression and imaging data. The workshop has a training-focus so each attendee will be provided with datasets to work with so that they gain hands-on experience in using these software tools. The workshop is designed for new users so no prior knowledge is required.

The workshop is on March 20th-21st at the University of York and costs just £35!
The registration deadline is Wednesday March 1st but places are limited.

Registration and more information can be found here:

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Sainsbury PhD Studentship opportunity

We are recruiting for a Sainsbury PhD Studentship which will be competitively awarded for entry in Octobber 2017. These studentships are prestigious and well-funded and enable excellent students to undertake a PhD in plant science. Proposals for PhD work in the DenbyLab should fall under the title “Tricking plant pathogens: exploiting pathogen effectors to develop durable disease resistance“.

If you are interested please contact Katherine to discuss the opportunity and potential projects further. The deadline for applications is Feb 24th 2017 with interviews on March 10th 2017.

See details at Nature.

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BBSRC White Rose DTP PhD opportunity

A competitively funded PhD studentship is available in the Denby group. This project – Keeping time on immunity – will be funded through the BBSRC White Rose Mechanistic Biology DTP and is a 4 year studentship.

Please contact Katherine if you are interested in this project and would like more information or want to discuss the project in more detail. The deadline for applications is Sunday January 8th 2017.

We look forward to hearing from motivated scientists looking to learn a range of skills and contribute to a productive and friendly research group.

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The Denbylab has moved!

downloadWe have moved to the Biology Department at the University of York. We have unpacked the lab in our new home and are ready to go.  If you are nearby please come and say hello.


AgriFoodLogo_Horizontal_RGBKatherine has also taken on a new exciting role as Academic Director of the N8 AgriFood programme; the launch event on 21st -22nd June in Manchester promises to be a fantastic event so hope to see you there!


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Plant circadian clocks enable plants to predict when they’ll be infected

Watch a short video on our recent publication identifying JAZ6 as a mechanism linking the plant circadian clock and immune response. The paper is published in Plant Journal (2015, 84:937-948).

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Read about our recent paper on defence against Pseudomonas syringae

In this GARNet blog – – you can read about our recent paper using time series transcriptome data to probe the plant defence response against the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae. You can also listen to the lead author Prof. Murray Grant talking about the significance of this work.

Lewis LA, Polanski K, de Torres-Zabala M, Jayaraman S, Bowden L, Moore J, Penfold CA, Jenkins DJ, Hill C, Baxter L, Kulasekaran S, Truman W, Littlejohn G, Prusinska J, Mead A, Steinbrenner J, Hickman R, Rand D, Wild DL, Ott S, Buchanan-Wollaston V, Smirnoff N, Beynon J, Denby K, Grant M (2015) Transcriptional Dynamics Driving MAMP-Triggered Immunity and Pathogen Effector-Mediated Immunosuppression in Arabidopsis Leaves Following Infection with Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato DC3000 Plant Cell.

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