Junior Research Scientist on insect eco-immunology


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INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (INRAE) is a public research establishment under the dual authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Research.

INRAE is recruiting researchers by open competition and offering permanent position.

It is a major player in research and innovation created on 1st of January 2020. INRAE is a research institute resulting from the merger of INRA and IRSTEA. It is a community of 12,000 people with more than 200 research units and 42 experimental units located throughout France.

The institute is among the world leaders in agricultural and food sciences, in plant and animal sciences, and is 11th in the world in ecology and environment. INRAE’s main goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. In the face of the increase in population, climate change, scarcity of resources and decline in biodiversity, the institute develops solutions for multiperformance agriculture, high quality food and sustainable management of resources and ecosystems.

Work environment, missions and activities

The DGIMI laboratory focuses on the interactions between lepidopteran crop pests, their parasitic environment (macro- and micro-organisms) and their host plants. DGIMI's ambition is to develop a new scientific front by integrating concepts of functional and evolutionary ecology into the study of these interactions, which until now have been approached from the angle of molecular and cellular mechanisms. This profile in eco-immunology of insect pests, at the frontier between ecology and immunity, answers this goal.

The objective is to analyze the variability of responses to infection in insect pests as a function of environmental factors, in order to understand the capacity of insect populations to maintain themselves or not in a given biotic and abiotic environment. You will design and implement mesocosm-type experimental set-ups to identify the intrinsic (genetics, microbiota) and environmental (food resources, temperature) factors determining the ability of pests to cope with pathogens. You will use statistical methods to analyze functional variations between individuals, and be able to analyze the mechanisms explaining individual tolerance/resistance. This project will provide a better understanding of individual and population variations in susceptibility to infection, and ultimately their consequences for the effectiveness of biocontrol strategies.

You'll benefit from DGIMI's expertise in insect immunity, insect genomics and associated microbiota and pathogens. You will also benefit from a rich local scientific environment, particularly in ecology, population genetics and evolutionary sciences. Local collaborations will eventually enable you to tackle interdisciplinary questions such as the consequences of immune variations on pest population dynamics, or the determinants of the invasive success of certain species.

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Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

Competition is open to candidates with a PhD (or equivalent) in ecology and evolution.

Specialization in ecophysiology, experience in invertebrate immunity and expertise in statistical data analysis are desirable. A good knowledge of insects is a plus.

Fluency in English is desirable, as is long-term international experience: candidates who have not already had such experience will be required to spend a year abroad at the end of the internship year.

INRAE's life quality

By joining our teams, you benefit from:

- 30 days of annual leave + 15 days "Reduction of Working Time" (for a full time);
- parenting support: CESU childcare, leisure services;
- skills development systems: training, career advise;
- social support: advice and listening, social assistance and loans;
- holiday and leisure services: holiday vouchers, accommodation at preferential rates;
sports and cultural activities;
- collective catering.

For international scientists: please visit your guide to facilitate your arrival and stay at INRAE

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2024-SPE-8
  • Corps: CR
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 37
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