Synthetic Biology (Leister 1)

Department / Institute
Faculty of Biology, Plant Molecular Biology
Subject area
Genetics, evolutionary biology, microbiology
Project title
Enhancing photosynthesis by synthetic biology and adaptive laboratory evolution
Name of supervisor
Prof. Dario Leister
Number of open positions
Language requirements
Proficiency in English
Academic requirements
4-year Bachelor's plus Master's Degree; at the time of application, the last final exam should have taken place in the past 4 years.
Study model
Full doctoral study model: 36 or 48 months

Project description

In this project, parts of the light reactions of photosynthesis from very different species will be genetically combined in a model cyanobacterium. The aim is to improve photosynthesis with respect to its potential to use light of different wavelengths. In a complementary approach, we will use adaptive laboratory evolution to make photosynthetic organisms more tolerant to different stresses, such as high light or high temperature stress. Mutations will be identified by whole genome sequencing, characterised for their molecular effects and tested for their potential to increase stress tolerance in several species.


Hitchcock A, Hunter CN, Sobotka R, Komenda J, Dann M, Leister D (2022) Redesigning the photosynthetic light reactions to enhance photosynthesis - the PhotoRedesign consortium. Plant J. 109: 23-34. doi: 10.1111/tpj.15552.

For further information, please contact Dario Leister:

Research group website

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