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Post Doctoral Research Associate - Synthetic Biology (UTIA)

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville, TN

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Postdoctoral Research Associate in Synthetic Biology  

Description: The Center for Agricultural Synthetic Biology (CASB) at the University of Tennessee is seeking two full-time post-doctoral research associates to work on bioengineering plants as a chassis to achieve a variety of functions, including biosensing, pharmaceutical production, nutrient biofortification, and remediation of environmental chemicals. The goals of these projects will be to reimagine plants as engineered devices capable of achieving complex non-native functions. Direct experience in plant bioengineering or biotechnology is not required; however, competitive applicants will have experience in bioengineering at least one chassis organism. Yeast and bacterial systems are commonly used to validate components or assemble constructs prior to final installation in plants. Applicants should have strong experience in cloning, circuit design, and bioengineering with relevant publications to demonstrate their expertise.

CASB is a dynamic, multi-disciplinary research facility with > 30 researchers working on a variety of projects. CASB maintains a large portfolio of high-throughput instrumentation, including 4 automated liquid handling systems, a cell-sorter, a flow cytometer, a complete sequencing hub, microscopy facility, and LC/MS. While US Citizenship is not required for some projects, other projects do require US Citizenship due to the requirements of the sponsor. As the projects are high-risk, high-reward, and focused on achieving aggressive milestones, applicants must be capable of thinking ‘outside the box’ and meeting designated deadlines.

Positions are full-time with benefits and available immediately for one-to-two years (depending on the immediate best-fit project) with a possibility of renewal for up to four years based on performance and continued funding. Salary is based on experience and qualifications according to UT policy.



Applicants must have a PhD in molecular biology, cell biology, biotechnology, bioengineering or a related-field. Candidates who are in process of obtaining the degree may be considered but degree must be conferred by Summer 2023 with official transcript provided as verification prior to date of hire. Applicants must have demonstrated experience (publications) in molecular biology, cell biology, biotechnology, bioengineering or a related field to be considered for these positions. Preference will be given to applicants with strong publication records, considerable drive and motivation, and excellent problem-solving skills.

How to apply:

Interested applicants should apply at Applicants should include: 1) a cover letter stating the applicant’s research experience, interests and possible starting date; 2) a CV; and 3) the names, telephone numbers and e-mail addresses of three professional references. 

Job: Research Professional
Primary Location: US-Tennessee-knoxville
Organization: Synthetic Biology Center Agresearch
Schedule: Full-time
Job Posting: Jun 6, 2023, 1:34:29 PM


Working at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Founded in 1794, the University of Tennessee is one of the nation’s oldest and most storied public universities. Based in Knoxville, Tennessee’s flagship land-grant institution includes the statewide Institute of Agriculture and the Space Institute in Tullahoma. The university embodies excellence in teaching, discovery, scholarship, research, creative activity, outreach, and engagement. Known as the Volunteers, we lead with a spirit of selflessness, empathy, and courage, and strive to be champions for diversity, equity, and inclusion

UT Knoxville is a Research 1 university with 11 academic colleges and more than 900 programs of study. With an enrollment of more than 30,000 students, our academic programs are repeatedly ranked top in their class. The university co-manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the country’s most prominent national lab, driving innovation in advanced manufacturing and materials, national security, and more. We are closely connected with our communities through outreach and extension efforts across Tennessee and through partnerships with non-profits, corporations, and industries—regionally, nationally, and around the globe.

The city of Knoxville is nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. The modern, thriving community is surrounded by gorgeous lakes and hundreds of miles of walking, hiking, and biking trails. Situated along the banks of the Tennessee River, our beautiful features an eclectic music scene, internationally recognized festivals, unique restaurants, and a robust offering of diverse cultural activities. Knoxville is located within a day’s drive of Atlanta, Nashville, Asheville, Charlotte, Louisville, Cincinnati, Memphis, Chicago, and Washington D.C.

Knoxville and the surrounding counties have a population of more than 850,000 people. The region houses many leading corporations and organizations, including Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Pilot/Flying J, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and Regal Cinemas, along with HGTV, Food Network, and other networks owned by Discovery Inc.

As a member of the UT family, you will be surrounded by top-notch faculty, staff, and students from around the world. You will be part of a diverse campus community that is passionate about changing the world and cheering for the Vols on game day.

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