A la date du 3/02/2014


Post-doctoral researcher

A 2-year, postdoctoral position, starting in 2014, is offered at LOV on microalgae ecophysiology, within PURPLE SUN, an ANR-funded research project.

When producing microalgae at large scale (in raceways or photobioreactors), cells face intense shifts in temperature and irradiance at short time scales and in a concomitant fashion. Excess of solar energy is damageable for microalgae as it induces photosaturation and photoinhibition, as well as the synthesis of photoprotective pigments, and can also lead to a counterproductive increase in medium temperature. As for temperature, low levels of irradiance may strongly slow down productivity while high levels can rapidly become lethal.

We are interested in evaluating the effects of fluctuating patterns of irradiance and temperature on the growth of marine or brackish strains.

Experiments will be performed to better understand and finally master the effect of light quality, light intensity and temperature on microalgae growth rate and bioaccumulation of energetic compounds.

The postdoctoral researcher will analyze the sensitivity of strains to modified light spectra and fluctuations in temperature. In particular, (s)he will investigate how light availability may stimulate the production of platform molecules (in particular high energy carbon storage molecules) by altering the composition of the light spectrum.

(S)he will thus be entrusted the cultivation of microalgae within specifically designed growth reactors and the related biochemical analyses. Because lipid storage and remobilization are closely related to cell cycle, a first critical aspect of the project will be to determine how light and temperature affect both the cell cycle and the lipid metabolism. At a later stage, the effects of temperature will also be considered as these both affect the photosynthetic efficiency and the growth rate. The research fellow will interact in close collaboration to permanent researchers and a PhD student. At least 2 publications in major peer review journals are expected from the work to be done.

Desired skills:

  • Oceanography or biotechnology background,
  • Experience in phytoplankton/microalgae cultivation techniques (batch and continuous cultures), biochemical analyses (such as measures of chlorophyll content, total C & N, cellular pools like carbohydrates,
    lipids), and cell growth monitoring (such as the use of cell counters, spectrophotometers, flow cytometers).
  • Good knowledge of spoken French or English as well of written English is required.
  • Will to work in a team and independency to carry out his/her own experiments.


Antoine Sciandra sciandra -at-
Sophie Rabouille srabouille -at-

Net Salary : 2000 euros (2700 USD)

Dead line : 15 february 2014


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