Jobs

[Closes 22 Mar 2018] Vacancy for Lecturer or Senior Lecturer in Synthetic Biology at University of Edinburgh

Vacancy: Lecturer or Senior Lecturer in Synthetic Biology

We seek an excellent scientist and inspiring teacher who uses synthetic biology methods in research programmes such as genome engineering, biotechnology, metabolic engineering, genetic circuit design and engineering (both in vivo and cell free), bio-sensing, multi-cellularity and tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, novel vaccine development or addresses key questions in molecular or cell biology. The Edinburgh Genome Foundry’s facilities for automated DNA assembly can support large-scale synthetic biology and synthetic genomics research and we would be particularly enthusiastic about research programmes that took advantage of these capabilities.

You will have the ability, enthusiasm and breadth of vision required to be a future leader in this rapidly moving field. You will pursue an independent research programme, working collaboratively and leading a team. You must have an established track record of relevant publications and the potential to win future investment in research, and will be expected to engage with both commercial and public research users and funders. You will be enthusiastic about teaching and student-centred learning for both undergraduate and postgraduate students.

The University of Edinburgh is a vibrant, research-driven community offering opportunities to work with internationally leading academics whose visions are shaping tomorrow’s world. The School of Biological Sciences is one of the UK’s largest and most highly rated life sciences departments, providing an innovative environment for research and teaching with a strong emphasis on interdisciplinary research. SynthSys, the Centre for Synthetic and Systems Biology, is one of the largest groupings of systems and synthetic biologists in the UK with expertise ranging from microbes to mammalian cells working on applications in biotechnology and medicine as well as contributing to foundational and fundamental research. SynthSys is highly multidisciplinary with members from the schools of engineering, informatics, chemistry, physics, social sciences, medicine as well as biological sciences. You will join a team of group leaders working at the interface between molecular cell biology and quantitative science, with strong links in biotechnology.

Informal enquiries: Prof Susan Rosser susan.rosser@ed.ac.uk

This posts are full time and open ended.

Salary: UE08 £39,992 - £47,722 per annum / UE09: £50,618 - £56,950 per annum

Closing Date: Thursday 22nd March 2018 at 5pm (GMT)

To apply: www.vacancies.ed.ac.uk search for #042732

[Closes 12 Mar 2018] OpenPlant and SynBio SRI seek new Coordinator - apply now!

The University of Cambridge is seeking a Co-ordinator for two Synthetic Biology research initiatives. The role-holder would work 50% to support the OpenPlant Synthetic Biology Research Centre and 50% with the Synthetic Biology Strategic Research Initiative (SynBio SRI).

We are seeking a Co-ordinator for two Synthetic Biology research initiatives at the University of Cambridge. The role-holder would work 50% to support the OpenPlant Synthetic Biology Research Centre and 50% with the Synthetic Biology Strategic Research Initiative (SynBio SRI). The purpose of the role is to help develop and implement a strategy that will enable both initiatives to become known leaders in the field and sustainable in the longer term.

OpenPlant (http://openplant.org) is a consortium funded by BBSRC and EPSRC comprising 20 labs spanning the University of Cambridge, John Innes Centre and the Earlham Institute (Norwich). The work of the Research Centre is intended to promote novel research on tools and applied traits for plant synthetic biology, open sharing of foundational technologies, and responsible innovation. The role-holder will work with the OpenPlant Directors and Management Group, including the OpenPlant Project Manager based in Norwich, to co-ordinate a variety of activities within the Research Centre.

The SynBio SRI (http://synbio.cam.ac.uk) aims to catalyse interdisciplinary exchange between engineering, physics, biology and social sciences to advance Synthetic Biology at the University of Cambridge. The role-holder will work with the SRI Co-Chairs and Steering Committee to develop, plan and deliver the SRI's vision and strategy. They will facilitate efforts to promote development of open technologies, build shared resources, and provide a hub for networking and discussion.

Responsibilities will also include co-ordinating seed funding competitions such as the Biomaker Challenge and OpenPlant Fund; organising formal and informal scientific meetings and forums; developing and managing relationships with stakeholders within and external to the University; seeking small and large-scale funding for future activities. The role-holder is additionally responsible for ensuring that synthetic biology activities in Cambridge are actively communicated and promoted, and is supported by the part-time SynBio SRI Events and Communication Co-ordinator.

The successful candidate will have a PhD in a relevant field and knowledge of Synthetic Biology research, policy and practice. They will have the ability to foster relationships with and between academics at all levels in an interdisciplinary context, and build partnerships with companies, funders and policy makers. A successful track record in attracting research funding would be advantageous. Excellent organisational and communications skills are essential, together with proven problem-solving skills and initiative.

 For more information and to apply >>

[Closes 20 Feb 2018] Synthetic Biology Postdoc at Earlham Institute

OpenPlant PI Dr Nicola Patron is looking for a Postdoctoral Research Scientist to work on a European Research Area (ERA) CoBioTech collaborative project based in the Patron Lab at the Earlham Institute. The project will use will use synthetic biology, comparative transcriptomics, metabolic engineering and genome editing/engineering techniques to develop plants and fungi as low-cost, sustainable production platforms for biosynthesis of insect pheromones..

Apply now >>
Closing date 20th February 2018

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[Closes 2 Jan 2018] Postdoc in Synthetic Biology at Newcastle University

Newcastle University are seeking a highly motivated experimental synthetic biology researcher to join Dr Angel Goñi-Moreno’s team at the Interdisciplinary Computing and Complex BioSystems (ICOS) group and the Centre for Synthetic Biology and the Bioeconomy of Newcastle University. You will work on the project “SynBio3D: Establishing the engineering fundamentals of three-dimensional synthetic biology”.

This project seeks to integrate spatial constraints such as distances and molecular crowding into the design and construction of gene regulatory circuits. Each gene sequence and each protein may need a specific physical address in the spatial frame of a cell for optimal performance (see http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acssynbio.6b00397 ), a fundamental question to be addressed by the project. This will bring spatial resolution to synthetic biology. Single molecules and DNA components will be tracked inside living cells. This project offers a fantastic playground for a researcher in synthetic biology to conduct highly novel research.


You will have a PhD awarded, or be close to obtaining one, with a significant molecular biology, genetic engineering or related component. You will have skills in the construction and validation of synthetic genetic circuits in bacterial cells. You will have knowledge in genome editing techniques. You will have experience in using fluorescence microscopy and, ideally, the visualization of gene expression constituents in individual cells. Experience in super-resolution microscopy is not essential, but will be positively considered. You will possess strong interests in the application of single-molecule tracking to synthetic biology problems.

You will need to be able to work independently as well as part of a team. Good communication skills are essential – our team includes computer scientists, engineers, biochemists, physicists and molecular biologists. Working under the supervision of senior colleagues, you will develop and initiate new collaborations both internally and externally. You will need to write up research results as well as to present our developments in national and international conferences and meetings. You will contribute to identify potential areas of research within the project and develop leadership skills.

The post is available fixed term for 24 months with start date as soon as possible.
Interviews will take place in January 2018, exact date to be confirmed upon invitation.

More information >>

[Deadline 15 Dec 2017] Faculty Openings at Northwestern Center for Synthetic Biology

The Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University invites applications for a tenure-track position at the rank of Assistant Professor in the Center for Synthetic Biology

Applicants should have a PhD and postdoctoral experience in a field related to synthetic biology and should have research plans that apply synthetic biological approaches to biomedical goals. Ideal candidates should also demonstrate strong communication and leadership skills, as well as an ability to contribute actively to a rapidly growing Center.

Northwestern University has recently started the Center for Synthetic Biology as a university-wide initiative to formalize and grow Synthetic Biology as a research theme. Northwestern University offers superb start-up packages with a collegial and collaborative scientific environment that is rich with core facilities, robust cross- disciplinary graduate training programs, and diverse expertise.

Candidates should have a Ph.D. and/or a M.D. degree and postdoctoral experience. Salary is commensurate with experience and accomplishment.

Deadline: review of received applications will start December 15, 2017, and will continue until the position is filled. 

More information  >>

Apply >>

 

[Closes 5 Jan 2018] Two post-doctoral fellowships in plant synthetic biology at Colorado State University

The Antunes and Medford Research groups at Colorado State University are looking for two (2) post-doctoral fellows to work on a new plant synthetic biology project to produce useful, living biomaterials

 A Ph.D. in plant molecular biology, cell biology, synthetic biology or a related field is required. Ideal applicants will have experience in molecular biology, plant cell biology and gene cloning. Experience in synthetic biology, design of synthetic genes and gene circuits, and basic mathematical modeling is desired; however, strong candidates without experience in one of these areas may be considered. Experience in moss culture and transformation is valued. Experience with transgenic plants is helpful but not essential.

Well-developed skills in written and verbal communication are desirable. The incumbents are expected to interact with other post-docs, graduate students, lab technicians and undergraduate students in a positive and professional manner.

Duties include applying a variety of molecular biology techniques, gene expression studies, synthetic gene construction, production and analysis of transgenic plants, planning experimental approaches based on research literature, and interpreting results. The successful individuals will be self-motivated and capable of independent thought and research.

More information and to apply >>

Deadline is January 05, 2018.

[Closes 31 Dec 2017] Applications for the 2018 EUSynBioS Steering Committee are now open !

EUSynBioS is a community for students and postdocs in European synthetic biology. Applications to join their 2018 Steering Committee are now open until 31 December 2017, where you can help facilitate horizontal connections across the synthetic biology community and convene joint events with fellow communities around the globe.

Christian Boehm, who recently completed his PhD at the University of Cambridge is the current EUSynBioS Chair and sends this message:

"Dear EUSynBioS community,

As you know, this initiative is run entirely by dedicated students and postdocs keen to make a difference in European synthetic biology. Over the previous year, we have had a fantastic group of people on the Steering Committee: they have amplified our social media presence, represented our voice in the UN Convention on Biological Diversity's discussions on synthetic biology, organised the EUSynBioS Social in Manchester and of course our EUSynBioS Symposium at CNB-CSIC Madrid.
The fourth year of EUSynBioS shall facilitate horizontal connections across the community, further strengthen our interface to industry, and bring about more joint events with fellow communities around the globe.

Do these challenges sound appealing to you ?
Do you have an idea which would really make a difference to the community ?
Do you have what it takes to be a leader in European synthetic biology ?

Then be a part of the 2018 EUSynBioS Steering Committee!
Applications are now open until 31. December 2017. We will be in touch with you soon thereafter, and aim to announce our 2018 Steering Committee in early January."

More information and to apply >>

[Closes Dec 2017] Eligo Bioscience seeking synthetic biologist and related positions

Eligo Bioscience are recruiting a new cohort of amazing scientists and executives to work with us on one of the most exciting synthetic biology-based drug-development platforms. To build the next generation of targeted drugs, they are looking for the most talented microbiologists, genome architects, bioengineers, and DNA hackers to join one of their R&D teams

Eligo Bioscience are recruiting a new cohort of amazing scientists and executives to work with us on one of the most exciting synthetic biology-based drug-development platforms. To build the next generation of targeted drugs, they are looking for the most talented microbiologists, genome architects, bioengineers, and DNA hackers
to join one of their R&D teams

 

Synthetic Biologist / Geneticist

To be able to translate our research to the clinic, we need to genetically engineer our producer strains to enable the packaging of synthetic circuits into our eligobiotics, and also to optimize the genetic circuits themselves to perform well in in-vivo models.

We are looking for excellent molecular biologists / synthetic biologists excited to tackle the ambitious challenges of diving into phage genetics and engineering bacterial strains.

The ideal candidate is passionate about genetic engineering. You’ll work hand-in-hand with Eligo microbiologists, phage biologists, and animal model scientists to optimize the engineering and validation of eligobiotics


Microbiologist

Eligo is building a platform technology to produce an arsenal of eligobiotics to target a wide range of bacterial species. With such a capability, Eligo is poised to lead the new generation of precision microbiome engineering companies. To build our library of delivery vectors based on phage capsids, we need to turn wild-type bacterial strains into engineered producer strains.

We are looking for excellent microbiologists excited to tackle the challenge of engineering and optimizing bacterial strains (aerobic/anaerobic, gram pos/gram neg, etc) to enable the production of species-specific eligobiotics. The ideal candidate is passionate about microbiology and molecular biology.

You’ll work hand-in-hand with Eligo phage biologists, synthetic biologists, and animal models scientists to optimize the engineering and validation of eligobiotics candidates for clinical trials.candidates for clinical trials.


Phage Biologist

To build our library of delivery vectors based on phage capsids, we need not only to discover and characterize a large number of phages with unique capabilities, but also validate their in-vivo activity.

We are looking for phage experts excited to tackle the challenge of both screening environmental samples and bacterial collections to discover unknown phages and characterizing them once isolated. Our whole process is now highly automatized thanks to our robotic pipeline.

The ideal candidate is passionate about phage biology and phage therapy. You’ll work hand-in-hand with Eligo microbiologists, genetic engineers, and animal model scientists to optimize the engineering and validation of eligobiotics candidates for clinical trials.

[Closes 30 Nov 2017] PhD Internship available: BrisSynBio Innovations Officer

BrisSynBio are looking for an enthusiastic individual to support some of BrisSynBio's innovation activities in 2018. They will develop, organise and participate in the BrisSynBio 4-Day More Business Acumen (MBA) course

This hands-on programme provides entrepreneurship and business training to synthetic biologists and culminates in a dragons’ den pitching event with venture capitalists and £10,000 of prizes. They will also support the broader activities of the innovation programme including industrial networking and translational funding as required.

The post will be located in the Life Sciences Building on the University of Bristol campus, but may also include travel within Bristol and the UK. Applicants should have good organisational, communication, and interpersonal skills and be available to start in February 2018.

Deadline: 30 November 2017 

https://pipsadverts.wordpress.com/2017/10/20/bristol-centre-for-synthetic-biology-brissynbio/

 

[Closes 27 Nov 2017] PhD on plant gene regulation

PhD available with Dr Nicola Patron of the Earlham Institute on design principles for synthetic gene regulation - understanding how cis-regulatory functions are encoded in plant DNA.

Plants are emerging as commercially-relevant production systems for high-value natural products. This requires suites of non-homologous, characterised regulatory elements for applications such as balancing components within a responsive circuit and preventing the build-up of toxic intermediates along a biosynthesis pathway. Plant regulatory sequences are comprised of complex arrangements of protein binding motifs and cis-regulatory elements. Both the primary DNA sequence and secondary DNA structure contribute to regulating gene-expression by recruiting proteins and dictating nucleosome architecture. This project will apply an original synthetic-biology approach to study the relationship between sequence and function utilising comparative genomic approaches to inform the design of synthetic regulatory sequences. This will enable us to understand how cis-regulatory function is encoded in specific DNA sequences. The project will focus on the identification and characterisation of cis-regulatory elements conserved across plants to inform the design of minimal synthetic elements that function across species. Comparative analysis of genome sequences will be used to inform iterative 'design-build-test-learn' cycles in which the function of libraries of designed, synthetic sequences will be analysed. The student will be trained in bioinformatics and comparative genomics analyses, synthetic biology approaches and low and high-throughput plant molecular biology and biotechnology techniques.

More information and application >>

[Closes 12 Jan 2018] Synthetic Biology Centre for Doctoral Training 2018 Cohort is now open for applications

The Synthetic Biology Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) is a collaboration between the Universities of Bristol, Oxford and Warwick. It offers a four-year training programme leading to a PhD. The programme is designed for students with both physical and life sciences backgrounds.

More information and to apply >>

The first two terms are in Oxford, taught by staff from all three institutions, and devoted to acquiring the necessary theoretical and technical skills, through a combination of intensive lecture courses, practicals, seminars, project work and training in research and communication skills.

Over the third term and summer period at the end of the first year, students will undertake two extended projects, each lasting about 10 weeks. These are similar in scope to a master's-level project and serve as both advanced training and to help students  choose their research topic for the final three years of the course.

After completing these projects, students will undertake substantive PhD research projects in synthetic biology in their home participating university.

The Synthetic Biology CDT will produce internationally excellent researchers with key skills desired by prospective employers in the nascent field of synthetic biology.

[Closes 27 Nov 2017] PhD on plant gene regulation

PhD available with OpenPlant PI Dr Nicola Patron of the Earlham Institute on design principles for synthetic gene regulation - understanding how cis-regulatory functions are encoded in plant DNA.

Plants are emerging as commercially-relevant production systems for high-value natural products. This requires suites of non-homologous, characterised regulatory elements for applications such as balancing components within a responsive circuit and preventing the build-up of toxic intermediates along a biosynthesis pathway. Plant regulatory sequences are comprised of complex arrangements of protein binding motifs and cis-regulatory elements. Both the primary DNA sequence and secondary DNA structure contribute to regulating gene-expression by recruiting proteins and dictating nucleosome architecture. This project will apply an original synthetic-biology approach to study the relationship between sequence and function utilising comparative genomic approaches to inform the design of synthetic regulatory sequences. This will enable us to understand how cis-regulatory function is encoded in specific DNA sequences. The project will focus on the identification and characterisation of cis-regulatory elements conserved across plants to inform the design of minimal synthetic elements that function across species. Comparative analysis of genome sequences will be used to inform iterative 'design-build-test-learn' cycles in which the function of libraries of designed, synthetic sequences will be analysed. The student will be trained in bioinformatics and comparative genomics analyses, synthetic biology approaches and low and high-throughput plant molecular biology and biotechnology techniques.

More information and application >>

 

[Closes 31 Oct 2017] University of Cambridge Lectureship in Synthetic Biology

Applications are invited for a University Lectureship in Synthetic Biology at the University of Cambridge. This is a tenure-track position based in the Department of Engineering and is supported by the School of Biological Sciences (SBS). We particularly encourage applicants who complement current research within Engineering, SBS and across the University, and who are motivated to explore interdisciplinary collaborations.

The successful candidate will have an established DNA-based experimental research program in a topic including, but not limited to:

  • Design and engineering of synthetic genetic circuits (both cellular and cell-free)
  • Genome engineering
  • Biosensing and biological signal processing
  • Spatio-temporal gene regulation
  • Engineering of multicellular interactions and tissue structure/function

In addition, research may combine theoretical and numerical approaches with experiments. The successful candidate will have, or be expected to develop, a record of world-class research commensurate with the international reputation and top-rank research rating of the Department.

The candidate will be expected to contribute exciting and innovative teaching material to our rapidly growing bioengineering courses in the Engineering curriculum, with teaching and administration accounting for approximately 40% of the role. Teaching responsibilities will include contributing to undergraduate courses, supervising undergraduate projects, examining and supervising postgraduate students.

More information and to apply >>

[Closes 31 Sep 2017] PhD Studentship in sex chromosome evolution in liverworts

Evolution of sex chromosomes is well-studied in organisms in which sex is expressed in the diploid phase. In such organisms the lack of recombination and the asymmetry in haploidy are assumed to lead to the progressive decay of the Y chromosome. In organisms in which sex is expressed in the haploid phase both U and V chromosomes are equally devoid of recombination and show no asymmetry in recombination suppression. This provides a unique opportunity to tease apart the effect of this two factors on the evolutionary trajectory of sex chromosomes. We are using a combination of classical genetic and comparative genomic approaches to test hypotheses concerning sex chromosome evolution in haploid dioecy using liverworts as a suitable model system (Marchantia polymorpha, Preissia quadrata and many more).

The goal of this project is to (1) develop a new methodology for capturing and sequencing complete sex chromosomes in plant model systems and (2) to reconstruct their evolutionary history both at the gene and structural levels. Therefore, this position involves molecular laboratory work to develop and optimize capturing and sequencing protocols; bioinformatics work to analyze and interpret the generated next- generation sequencing data; and evolutionary and functional genetic analysis of the evolution of sex chromosomes in the model plant Marchantia polymorpha and other liverwort species. This project is aimed at addressing one of the fundamental questions of evolutionary biology, the genetic makeup of sex chromosomes in a haploid plant model organism, via developing a new cutting-edge method for third-generation sequencing.

The student will work 18 months at University of Zurich, Switzerland. The other 18 months at BaseClear, The Netherlands. Peter Szovenyi, University of Zurich; Prof. Elena Conti, University of Zurich, Prof. Michael Lenhard, University of Potsdam; Dr. Walter Pirovano, Dr. Adalberto Costessi and Dr. Daniël Duijsings, BaseClear BV, The Netherlands will jointly supervise the successful candidate. 

This is project is conducted in the framework of PlantHUB. PlantHUB is funded by the H2020 PROGRAMME Marie Curie Actions – People, Initial Training Networks (ITN).

Cambridge Consultant Synthetic Biology PhD Studentship

Cambridge Consultants is building an exciting new business in biotechnology, particularly synthetic biology. They’re working to bring together biology, chemistry and engineering to design and build engineered biological systems. As part of this mission, they're looking for a bright, motivated PhD student to join the team on an internship.

No deadline has been given but the advert was posted in Aug 2017.

With a strong background in biochemistry or molecular biology, the successful applicant will work alongside our scientists and engineers to apply their scientific skills and knowledge to our synthetic biology projects.  They’ll learn how new technology is applied in a business context and the challenges this presents.  

This is a three-month internship with flexible timing.

More information >>

[Closes 1 Sep 2017] Plant Synthetic Biology Assistant/Associate Professor (University of Nebraska)

Plant Synthetic Biology Assistant/Associate Professor The University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) is committed to conducting world-class research in plant biochemistry and has recently secured a $20 million Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) Grant from the NSF to establish the Center for Root and Rhizobiome Innovation (CRRI). Reflecting the institutional commitment to building infrastructure in plant biochemistry, UNL is seeking applicants for nine-month (academic year) tenure-leading Assistant Professor or Associate Professor faculty position (80% research and 20% teaching) in the Department of Biochemistry and the Center for Plant Science Innovation.

They will address the development and application of synthetic biology tools to address questions central to plant biology that contribute to crop productivity and/or quality.

Required qualifications include a PhD or equivalent in biochemistry, biology, molecular biology, plant physiology or related field; a minimum of two years of postdoctoral experience; and a strong record of original research as evidenced by peer- reviewed publications. For Assistant Professor, the incumbent is expected to develop an internationally recognized research program that attracts federal, commodity, international foundation, and/or industry funding leading to research results published in refereed scientific journals and presented at professional meetings. Applicants at the Associate Professor levels must have an externally supported research program and/or sufficient private sector experience, with publication, patent, and presentation outcomes demonstrating sustained and recognized research productivity. The incumbent will broadly address the development of synthetic biology tools, which may include but are not limited to those involving genome editing, gene stacking, and/or RNA-based control of gene expression and apply these tools for studies of photosynthesis, central carbon metabolism, specialized metabolism or other biochemical or biological processes that lead to improved crop germplasm. The ability to apply computational methods for use of large data sets in synthetic biology tool development is also desired. The university offers state of the art proteomics and metabolomics core facilities in the Center for Biotechnology and high-speed computing resources in the Holland Computing Center. Extensive field facilities, state-of-the-art image-based phenotyping instrumentation, breeding resources, and crop transformation core capacity are available to support translational research. This position is part of the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources initiative in Stress Biology, which offers a highly collaborative environment to develop focused research programs linked with modern biochemical methodologies, metabolic engineering, metabolomics, genomics, and computational approaches. A competitive start-up package and appropriate laboratory and office space will be offered.

The incumbent will contribute to the teaching mission of the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources and in particular will develop and teach undergraduate and graduate courses in the biochemistry core curriculum. It is expected that the incumbent will contribute to recruitment, retention and placement activities; incorporation of outcomes assessment; engagement in instructional improvement; mentoring undergraduate and graduate students; and serve on department, college, and UNL committees as appropriate.

To learn more about the University of Nebraska, the Department of Biochemistry and the Center for Plant Science Innovation see http://biochem.unl.edu ; http://www.unl.edu/psi/ .

How to Apply

To view details of the position and make application, go to http://employment.unl.edu Search for position F_170058. Click on “Apply to this job.”

Postdoctoral Research Fellow on engineering synthetic phage (Jaramillo Lab, Warwick University)

The goal of the Jaramillo lab is to achieve proof of concept for synthetic phages within the next 3 years. By working at the interface of molecular biology, combinatorial optimisation, microfluidics, directed evolution and 3D printing it is hoped that reaching this goal will accelerate more synthetic biology research globally thus enhancing our ability to combat diseases of the future.

There is no closing date listed, but the advert was posted in Aug 2017

From Warwick University:

“Superbugs…these are our babies…now they have body piercings and anger” - House, TV Show

According to the World Health Organisation antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats to global health, food security, and development today. The prevalent use of modern antibiotics over the last century has led to a bacterial arms race with increasingly potent infections proving more difficult to treat as each year passes. As the efficacy of our current armoury of antibiotics wanes, hospital stays lengthen, medical costs rise and without urgent action we will soon enter a post-antibiotic world where common infections will kill once again. While there are some new antibiotics in development, none of them are expected to be effective against the most dangerous forms of antibiotic-resistant bacteria of the future.

Is there a possible response that could safeguard humanity? Professor Alfonso Jaramillo thinks so and his lab at the University of Warwick is working hard to provide such a solution. It is a multidisciplinary lab that develops novel automated methodologies for design optimisation using computers, viruses or living cells for use in Phage Therapy. The ambition is the eventual development of synthetic phages, powerful antimicrobials which if their work proves successful will herald a new age in the fight against bacterium. Progress of the lab since 2013 has been steady with the foundations already laid of new technologies (computational and experimental) for the engineering of biomolecules. The key current focus is on the creation of automated algorithms that enable directed evolution in support of the difficult design phase of Synthetic Biology, by developing a general methodology for the de novo engineering of synthetic RNA parts and circuits it is hoped they will work robustly as targeted in a given cellular context.

The goal of the lab is to achieve proof of concept within the next 3 years. By working at the interface of molecular biology, combinatorial optimisation, microfluidics, directed evolution and 3D printing it is hoped that reaching this goal will accelerate more synthetic biology research globally thus enhancing our ability to combat diseases of the future.

This is where you come in, as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow we need your expertise to help build the lab’s research capability. You will form part of a high profile international team with labs in Warwick and ISSB in France. Your contribution to the lab’s body of knowledge in support of the goal of reaching proof of concept will have a direct impact on one of the most urgent health threats facing humanity.

More information >> [PDF] 

[Closes 22 Aug 2017] Research Associate position on open hardware for science (University of Bath)

From University of Bath:

Open source hardware could bring about a step change in science and medicine, by making high quality instruments more widely available and easier to customise. We are looking for a talented researcher with (or soon to be awarded) a PhD in Physics, Engineering, or a related discipline, to work as part of the "Open Lab Instrumentation" project that includes the Universities of Bath and Cambridge as well as our partners STICLab in Tanzania.

Salary: Starting from £32,004, rising to £38,183
Placed On: Monday 24 July 2017
Closing Date: Tuesday 22 August 2017
Interview Date: To be confirmed
Reference: SF5079

This project will enable high quality open-source instrumentation, by characterising and improving the mechanical properties of 3D printed mechanisms, then using these optimised structures, together with readily available electronic and optical components, as building blocks for microscopes, spectrometers, micromanipulators and more. Our first open instrument, the OpenFlexure Microscope, has already been reproduced by a number of groups, and tested in applications from malaria diagnostics to water quality monitoring.

You will build an understanding of how the small-scale structure of 3D printed parts (the "toolpath") affects their properties, then use this understanding to create improved toolpaths that result in stronger or more flexible parts.  This will involve both simulations and lab-based measurements, as well as adapting open-source software tools to generate the optimised toolpaths.  You will then go on to create designs for instrumentation using those optimisations, as well as contributing to software tools that allow others to do the same.  Good programming skills are essential, and experience in instrumentation design, mechanical simulation, and/or 3D printing is highly desirable.   As our goal is open-source hardware, we will contribute to various open source projects as well as starting new ones, and experience of open or collaborative development of either software or hardware would be particularly valuable.

You will be based within the Centre for Photonics and Photonic Materials in the Department of Physics.  This post is funded by an EPSRC project that is part of the Global Challenges Research Fund, announced by the UK Government to support cutting-edge research that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries.  In keeping with the international remit of this funding, there will be opportunities to travel to meet our Tanzanian partners, and to work with the end-users of our new instruments. 

Physics at the University of Bath is a research-led Department, ranked highly in the UK in the latest Research Excellence Framework, and the University recently attained a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework. Both the Department and the University are committed to providing a supportive and inclusive working environment, with an active Athena Swan programme and opportunities for researchers to receive training, mentorship, and career development.

Informal enquiries are encouraged, and should be directed to Dr. Richard Bowman (r.w.bowman@bath.ac.uk). 

More information >>

[Closes 31 Aug 2017] Call for Fellows at CRI Research

Information from the website of the Centre Recherches Interdisciplinaires (CRI): https://cri-paris.org 

The CRI collaboratory is recruiting fellows to join their adventure. They are inviting applications for three types of fellows: short (3-6 months), long (1-3 years) and core (5 years): https://cri-paris.org/research/call-for-fellows/


The CRI is broadening its research activities, creating a collaboratory at the crossroads across the life, learning, and digital sciences.

We are developing an open, collaborative research program to tackle the world’s health and education challenges, focusing on the following broad topics, amenable to bridge foundational research and societal impact:

  • Open health – from data-rich research to development of frugal software and hardware solutions.
  • Open learning – from understanding learning to human-machine paradigms
  • Open synthetic and systems biology – from foundational understanding of living systems to open biotech and open pharma solutions.
  • Open transitions – from tracing past major transitions to understanding and shaping current digital transition.
  • Open phronesis – tackling ethical challenges of our time.

The Collaboratory will host short (3-6 months), long (1-3 years) and core (5 years) research fellows alongside with their affiliated postdocs and PhD students. They will be accompanied by associate faculty members from France and abroad that will take part in the selection and mentoring the incoming fellows and students. Anyone capable of carrying an autonomous research project, from young graduates to established researchers (including sabbaticals) is eligible to apply to become a CRI Research Fellow.  We expect a gradual recruitment build-up to reach a 60-70 strong cohort within our dedicated building at the historical heart of Paris (the Marais) that will open its doors within a year. This 6500m2 building will include state-of-the-art wet lab space, makerspace, pedagogic facilities and studio apartments for young researchers.

[Closes 9 Aug 2017] DNA Foundry, Science and Technology Lead

Applications are invited for a DNA Foundry, Science and Technology Lead to join the Engineering Biology Group at the Earlham Institute. Using start-of-the-art laboratory automation and synthetic biology approaches, the Foundry has automated nanoscale pipelines for (i) part-based assembly and bacterial transformation, (ii) quality control of assemblies and (iii) delivery of constructs to chassis organisms. The mission of the Foundry is to bring these capabilities to bear on research in academia and industry. The post holder will establish and manage synthetic biology workflows at the Earlham DNA Foundry. This will include working with automation specialists and technical assistants to develop and execute protocols in DNA assembly, biosynthesis and genome engineering. In addition, they will engage and communicate with researchers in academia and industry to promote the mission of the Earlham Foundry and to establish and develop new collaborations. The ideal candidate will possess a PhD in Molecular Biology, Biotechnology, Synthetic Biology or a related subject. They will have an in depth understanding of molecular biology laboratory techniques and experience of collaborating with internal and external stakeholders on large scale projects. They must possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills. This position is open to applicant of all nationalities.

All applications must be made through the portal link: http://www.earlham.ac.uk/dna-foundry-science-and-technology-lead

Contact: nicola.patron@earlham.ac.uk