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Research Assistant II, Plant Molecular & Cellular Biology Laboratory- Dr. Joanne Chory

Salk Institute for Biological Studies
La Jolla, CA

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

Application Instructions:

Employment History Include your last ten (10) years of employment history, or length of your employment history if less, including all positions (even those that are not relevant to this position) and periods of unemployment. Incomplete information could disqualify you from further consideration.


The CRoPS project aims to develop crop plants with enhanced root systems to sequester more carbon underground to fight climate change. The Chory lab is looking for a Research Asst II to work under the general umbrella of the CRoPS project, with the goal of increasing root biomass through genetic manipulations.  The Research Asst II will, under general supervision with limited instruction for routine tasks, work closely with the Sr. Research Scientist and other members of the Chory laboratory, conduct research in both Arabidopsis and other plant species to identify and characterize new traits for increasing root biomass, and to characterize the underlying genetic mechanisms.  Responsibilities include: molecular biology studies, plant genotyping and phenotyping, plant maintenance and manipulation, image acquisition, data analyses, and troubleshooting. 


(100%) Research and Lab Support

  •  Perform molecular biology studies in plants;
  • Phenotype plants;
  • Performs selection and genotyping of plants;
  • Assists with maintaining lab stocks.



  •  A minimum of 2 years of experience as a lab technician or research assistant, or equivalent combination of education and experience;
  • Demonstrated experience and application of molecular biology knowledge in plant research, preferably in Arabidopsis;
  • Previous experience in classic Mendelian genetic analysis;
  • Demonstrated experience in data analysis and trouble shooting.
  • Previous experience in plant handling and maintenance;
  • Experience with general lab maintenance.


  •  3 or more years of post-Bachelor experience in wet-lab plant research;
  • Demonstrated experience in molecular cloning, RNA handling, DNA and RNA extraction, PCR and qPCR;
  • Experience with microscopy and plant phenotyping;
  • Experience with Arabidopsis maintenance both on soil and under sterile conditions.



  •  Bachelor’s degree in biological sciences or related field or equivalent



  • Theoretical and hands on knowledge of molecular biology and genetic techniques.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience in researching information and analyzing data to arrive at valid conclusions.
  • Ability to learn and carry out new experimental procedures with accuracy and efficiency. Demonstrated ability to follow verbal and/or written protocols, including follow-up on previously begun procedures.
  • Demonstrated ability to record data accurately and enter into appropriate medium.
  • Skill in the operation and maintenance of various lab equipment.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with both PC and MAC operating systems, standard business office equipment and commonly used software and tools, such as Microsoft Office, electronic mail, and the internet.
  • Proficiency with common office software applications as well as software applications used for research, recording, and analysis.
  • Highly organized, effective at multitasking, adept at juggling changing priorities
  • Proven ability to work both independently and also as part of a collaborative team.
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including tact, diplomacy, and flexibility.
  • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with diverse groups. Demonstrated skill in establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with personnel at all levels.


  •  Must be willing to work an adjusted schedule to support research needs.
  • Successful completion of the Institute’s background investigation.
  • Must be willing to sign a confidentiality agreement.
  • Must be willing to work in an animal-related research environment.


This position will be constantly handling and seeing.


Working at Salk Institute for Biological Studies

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies is one of the world's preeminent basic research institutions, where internationally renowned faculty probe fundamental life science questions in a unique, collaborative, and creative environment. Focused on both discovery and mentoring future generations of researchers, Salk scientists make groundbreaking contributions to our understanding of cancer, aging, Alzheimer's, diabetes, and cardiovascular disorders by studying neuroscience, genetics, cell and plant biology, and related disciplines.

Faculty achievements have been recognized with numerous honors, including Nobel Prizes and memberships in the National Academy of Sciences. Founded in 1960 by polio vaccine pioneer Jonas Salk, M.D., the Institute is an independent nonprofit organization and architectural landmark.

Salk Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination Statement

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies is committed to providing equal access to opportunities for students, employees, applicants for employment and other persons.

Our policies prohibit harassment or unlawful discrimination against individuals on the basis of sex, gender, marital or parental status, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, medical conditions/disabilities related to pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation age, ancestry, color, religion (including religious dress and grooming practices), family and/or medical care leave status, disability (mental or physical), registered domestic partner status, legally protected medical condition, genetic information, military or veteran status (disabled veteran, veteran of the Vietnam era, other covered veteran status), national origin (including language use restrictions and possession of a driver’s license), race, religion or any other classification protected by local, state or federal laws.

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Reasonable accommodation is available for qualified individuals with disabilities and for individuals with religious restrictions.

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