School of Medicine:
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Research Topic: Gene Therapy for Respiratory Dysfunction in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
Our lab is focused on gene therapy and the control of breathing in neuromuscular disorders. Specifically, we study mouse models of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Pompe disease and Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. In addition, we evaluate the efficacy of adeno-associated viral -mediated gene therapy to correct the respiratory insufficiency that results from these neuromuscular disorders. Specific functions we test are whole body plethysmography and neurophysiology, which measure the muscular and neurological inputs that enable breathing. We also work with neuronal cell cultures. Post-mortem molecular analysis is also employed, including biochemical (qPCR and western blot) and histological techniques.
As a clinician scientist, Dr. ElMallah’s goal is to bring therapy form the bench to the bedside and enhance research at the bench through observations at the bedside. A post-doctoral candidate will spearhead a project that examines the respiratory pathology and neuropathology in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and the impact of novel therapies on this pathology.
• Previous animal handling experience.
• Cell culture experience.
• Perform a variety of molecular, cellular, biochemical and immunological analyses.
• Optimize and troubleshoot experimental protocols and equipment.
• Design, execute and document experiments with sufficient detail to understand and repeat by other lab members.
• Update lab members on new developments in commercial reagents and techniques.
• Compile and document results, maintain lab notes, and assist in writing reports and research manuscripts.
• Prepare culture media, reagents and solutions. Assist in the development of new research procedures and techniques.
The Postdoctoral Appointee holds a PhD or equivalent doctorate (e.g., ScD, MD, DVM). Candidates with non-US degrees may be required to provide proof of degree equivalency.
1. A candidate may also be appointed to a postdoctoral position if the candidate has completed all of the requirements for a degree but the degree has not been formally conferred: in this case, the candidate may present evidence of completion of the degree requirements, together with a statement documenting the date on which the degree is to be conferred. If the degree is not conferred by this projected date, the postdoctoral appointment may be terminated.
2. Note for international candidates: Generally, immigration classifications (e.g., H-1B, J-1, etc.) require that the requisite degree be conferred before a petition can be filed or a visa document issued to sponsor the individual.
The term of the appointment is limited (see Section 5 of the Postdoc Policy for length of appointment).
The appointment involves substantially full-time research or scholarship and may include teaching responsibilities.
The appointment is generally preparatory for a full time academic or research career.
The appointment is not part of a clinical training program, unless research training under the supervision of a senior mentor is the primary purpose of the appointment.
The Postdoctoral Appointee functions under the supervision of a mentor or a department at Duke University.
The Postdoctoral Appointee is expected to publish the results of his or her research or scholarship during the period of the appointment.
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Essential Physical Job Functions: Certain jobs at Duke University and Duke University Health System may include essentialjob functions that require specific physical and/or mental abilities. Additional information and provision for requests for reasonable accommodation will be provided by each hiring department.