Research Assistant

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John Innes Centre

The John Innes Centre is an independent, international centre of excellence in plant science and microbiology, carrying out fundamental and strategic research, to train scientists and making our findings available to society.

Our research makes use of a wide range of disciplines in the biological and chemical sciences including; cell biology, biochemistry, chemistry, genetics and molecular biology.

We pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive working environment for all. We have a diverse and multicultural scientific community and thrive on our European and international links. We are proud to hold a prestigious Athena SWAN Gold award, recognising the impact of our work in promoting gender equality in science. We are also a proud member of the Stonewall Diversity Champion’s programme and, as a Disability Confident employer, guarantee to offer an interview to all disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for the post.

The John Innes Centre is a registered charity (No. 223852), limited by guarantee (registered in England No. 511709) and is an Equal Opportunities Employer.

Post Details

Job Title
Research Assistant
Post Number
1003554
Closing Date
7 Nov 2018
Grade
sc7
Starting Salary
£24,300 - £29,750
Hours per week
37
Project Title
Understanding and Engineering Alkaloid and Iridoid Biosynthesis
Expected/Ideal Start Date
01 Nov 2018
Months Duration
7

Main Purpose of the Job

This role is part of a project which explores the function and evolution of plant-derived natural products. The main responsibility of the post-holder will be to establish transformation and CRISPR protocols for the model plant Arabidopsis. The post-holder will also be asked to perform a range of general tasks to support the ongoing research in the lab. The post is for a period of 7 months; there may be a possibility to transition to another post after the end of this period.

Department

Biological Chemistry

The Biological Chemistry Department at the John Innes Centre carries out fundamental research on molecular processes in plants and microbes. With activities ranging from determining DNA topoisomerase structure to mechanism and the generation of novel functional nanostructures from engineered viruses, we employ a multidisciplinary approach that embraces contemporary aspects of enzymology, structural and molecular biology, bionanotechnology, carbohydrate and natural product chemistry. Coupled with state-of-the-art platform technologies for structural, proteomic and chemical genomic analysis, the Department bridges the gap between molecular science and cellular and systems biology. Collectively these studies provide key information with which to manipulate and control molecules, pathways and processes of agronomic, environmental and industrial importance.

Group Details

The O'Connor lab is a multidisciplinary laboratory that studies how specialised metabolites are synthesised in plants. A range of metabolic pathways are under investigation. Group members use molecular biology, protein biochemistry, analytical chemistry, organic chemistry and plant biology to address these problems.

Advert Text

Applications are invited for a Research Assistant to join the Laboratory of Professor Sarah O’Connor at the John Innes Centre.

Background:

The John Innes Centre is an independent, international centre of excellence in plant science, genetics and microbiology.

The O'Connor lab is a multidisciplinary laboratory that studies how specialised metabolites are synthesised in plants. A range of metabolic pathways are under investigation. Group members use molecular biology, protein biochemistry, analytical chemistry, organic chemistry and plant biology to address these problems.

The role:

This role is part of a project which explores the function and evolution of plant-derived natural products.

The main responsibility of the post-holder will be to establish transformation and CRISPR protocols for the model plant Arabidopsis. The post-holder will also be asked to perform a range of general tasks to support the ongoing research in the lab. The post is for a period of 7 months; there may be a possibility to transition to another post after the end of this period.

The post holder will be required to function independently, but will be interacting with a larger group. In addition to working with local group members, this post holder will also participate in periodic project meetings and conference calls with other project members from other participating institutions.

The ideal candidate:

To be considered for this role, candidates must possess a BSc in Biology, Biotechnology or similar subject. They should have basic molecular biology skills and also data analysis skills. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills are essential.

Additional information:

Salary on appointment will be within the range £24,300 to £29,750 per annum depending on qualifications and experience. This is a full-time post for a contract of 7 months, with possibility of extension.

For further information and details of how to apply, please visit our web site http://jobs.jic.ac.uk or contact the Human Resources team on 01603 450462 or nbi.recruitment@nbi.ac.uk quoting reference 1003554..

We are an equal opportunities employer, actively supporting inclusivity and diversity. As a Disability Confident organisation, we guarantee to offer an interview to all disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for this vacancy. The John Innes Centre is also proud to hold a Gold Award from Athena SWAN and is a member of Stonewall’s Diversity Champions programme.

Key Relationships

Work with Line manager, Sarah O'Connor
Interact with O'Connor group members

Main Activities & Responsibilities

Percentage
Establish transformation of Arabidospis thaliana in the laboratory
30
Help design and make appropriate silencing/knock-out constructs
20
Help support general lab day-to-day maintenance (e.g. assist with ordering, freezer organization)
15
Interact with other group members
15
As agreed with line manager, any other duties commensurate with the nature of the role
10

Education & Qualifications

Requirement
Importance
BSc, or equivalent, in Biology/Biotechnology or similar subject (full award or expected by the start of the post)
Essential

Specialist Knowledge & Skills

Requirement
Importance
Basic knowledge of plant biology
Essential
Basic molecular biology skills
Essential
Attention to detail
Essential
Ability to interpret basic experimental results in molecular biology/plant transformation
Essential
Data analysis skills
Essential

Relevant Experience

Requirement
Importance
Previous experience of working in a laboratory environment
Essential

Interpersonal & Communication Skills

Requirement
Importance
Excellent communication skills, both written and oral, including the ability to present complex information with clarity
Essential
Excellent time management and organisational skills
Essential
Good interpersonal skills, with the ability to work as part of a team
Essential
Demonstrated ability to work independently, using initiative and applying problem solving skills
Essential

Additional Requirements

Requirement
Importance
Willingness to work outside standard working hours when required
Essential
Promotes equality and values diversity
Essential
Willingness to embrace the expected values and behaviours of all staff at the Institute, ensuring it
Essential