Research Assistant

Job description

Position Number: 00107337

Primary Function of Organization Unit: The USDA-APHIS-PPQ-S&T CPHST Beltsville Laboratory mission is to provide federal confirmatory diagnostics for regulatory plant pests/pathogens; develop and validate advanced molecular and serological detection methods, and proficiency test (PT) panels for plant pests that threaten U.S. agriculture; evaluate applicability of new, state-of-the-art technologies and methodologies in support of the agency efforts.

Essential Job Duties: Project Title: Development and validation of advanced methods for detection and identification of plant quarantine pathogens. The incumbent will work under the general supervision of a Team/Project Leader to support the APHIS PPQ CPHST Beltsville Lab projects on developing and validation of molecular methods for diagnostics of regulatory plant pests/pathogens. As directed, the incumbent will conduct activities on high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and the development, evaluation, optimization and validation of molecular assays for identification of Oomycetes, or fungi. A fully trained candidate will be expected to be able to carry out high quality DNA extractions, prepare amplified template libraries for high-throughput sequencing, carry out DNA sequencing on Sanger, and on HTS DNA analyzers, check inventory and replenish consumable sequencing supplies, follow SOPs and guidance of supervisors. The incumbent will record details and results of experiments in an official laboratory notebook; enter data into computer programs; write data summary reports. Work duties will also include any combination of the following general laboratory maintenance tasks: cleaning and maintaining glassware; preparing media and reagents; preparing agarose gels; restocking and maintaining supplies; autoclaving; operating and maintaining specialized equipment. *The position is based at the CPHST Beltsville Laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland.*

Minimum Education/Experience: * Bachelor's degree in plant pathology, microbiology or related field and at least 3 years of relevant experience.

Department Required Skills: * Must have knowledge and experience of DNA & RNA isolation techniques, working with cloning kits, library preparation for High Throughput Sequencing (HTS) and Thermo cycler application. * Documented experience in molecular biology of microorganisms; computational biology/bioinformatics; conventional and real-time PCR and RT-PCR analysis; gel electrophoresis; Oomycetes, fungi or bacterial culturing techniques. * Attention to details, knowledge of GLP and QMS, SOP instructions and excellent technical skills. * Ability to plan and follow planned activities independently. * Working knowledge of Microsoft Office, good written and oral communication skills.

Preferred Experience, Skills, Training/Education: * Master's degree in plant pathology, microbiology or related field. * At least 2 years of experience in plant pathogen biology and/or detection, diagnostics of pathogens (fungi, bacteria, virus or nematodes). * Knowledge of plant pathogen biology and/or detection & diagnostics of pathogens (fungi, bacteria, virus or nematodes). * Experience with sequence analysis. * Knowledge of plant pathogen biology and/or detection & diagnostics of pathogens (Oomycetes, fungi, bacteria, virus or nematodes) and experience with sequencing and sequence analysis.

Necessary Licenses and Certifications: N/A

AA/EOE: NC State University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, status as an individual with a disability, or status as a protected veteran.

Individuals with disabilities requiring disability-related accommodations in the application and interview process, please call 919-515-3148. Final candidates are subject to criminal & sex offender background checks. Some vacancies also require credit or motor vehicle checks. If highest degree is from an institution outside of the U.S., final candidates are required to have their degree verified at "":http// Degree must be obtained prior to start date.

NC State University participates in E-Verify. Federal law requires all employers to verify the identity and employment eligibility of all persons hired to work in the United States.




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Job No:
Posted: 12/13/2018
Application Due: 2/8/2019
Work Type: