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Research Associate Position, Infectious Diseases Division

University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA

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Administrative Jobs
Academic Affairs, Research Staff & Technicians
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Job Details

Research Associate Position, Infectious Diseases Division

Philadelphia, PA
Open Date:
Sep 24, 2021
Close Date:
Sep 24, 2023

The Division of Infectious Diseases in the Department of Medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania seeks candidates for a Research Associate position in the Academic Support Staff. This appointment will be initially for one (1) year and continuation during that time period and renewal is based on satisfactory performance and availability of funding (limited to three (3) years). Expertise is required in the specific area of in vitro transcription, design, and production of nucleoside-modified mRNA, immunogen design, lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) formulation, LNP characterization, and targeting of LNPs to specific cell types and tissues. Applicants must have a Ph.D. with a minimum of 3 years of experience in mRNA design, mRNA production, formulation into LNPs, and in vivo assessment of mRNA based vaccines against both viral and bacterial pathogens, multiparametric flow cytometry (i.e. >16 colors), and assessment of innate immune responses and antigen specific T and B cells. Experience with mRNA-LNP bioditribution (i.e. organ and cell levels) is highly preferred.  Selected candidates will be expected to present research findings at peer academic institutions as well as national and international scientific meetings under the supervision and training of Dr. Drew Weissman. Qualified individuals will exhibit creativity in the application of cutting-edge techniques and approaches to advance their scientific progress. 

Responsibilities may include design, produce and purify (i.e. HPLC, cellulose) nucleoside modified mRNA; optimize in vitro transcription reactions; automate the production and purification process of mRNA; formulate mRNA into LNP; optimize LNP formulation for efficient in vivo delivery of mRNA; modify LNP surface using different chemistries for organ and cell type targeting; design and conduct multicolor flow cytometry experiments (>16 colors) to assess mRNA bio distribution and cell specific uptake of LNP and targeted LNPs; designs and conduct vaccine experiments; assess antigen specific T cell, antigen specific B cells antigen specific Tfh cell/GCB cells and Long lived plasma cells for vaccine performance. Develop neutralization assays. Perform molecular biology techniques such as cloning, nucleic acid extraction, qPCR, and RNA sequencing. Use of basic and advanced techniques to define correlates of mRNA delivery, and efficacy. Writing of standard operating procedures, and reports. Managing collaborations, train personnel, and supervise a team of 2-5 people.

Successful applicants will have an opportunity to interact and collaborate with different research faculty operating from the University of Pennsylvania, affiliated institutions, and outside collaborators. Use cutting-edge techniques to advance their research and attend both national and international conferences. Opportunities to attend/enroll in internal faculty development courses (i.e. leadership, scientific management, diversity and inclusion), attend/enroll in courses at the University of Pennsylvania, and apply to intra and extramural grants may also be available. The candidate is expected to secure at least one grant as a co-PI during employment.

We seek candidates who embrace and reflect diversity in the broadest sense. The University of Pennsylvania is an EOE. Minorities/women/individuals with disabilities/protected veterans are encouraged to apply.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement:

The University of Pennsylvania values diversity and seeks talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University of Pennsylvania is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer.  Candidates are considered for employment without regard to race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status or any other legally protected class. Questions or concerns about this should be directed to the Executive Director of the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Programs, University of Pennsylvania, 421 Franklin Building, 3451 Walnut Street,  Philadelphia, PA 19104-6205; or (215) 898-6993 (Voice) or (215) 898-7803 (TDD).


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Company info
(215) 898-7372
3451 Walnut Street

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