Research Associate - Infectious Disease

Worcester, Worcester County
Jul 02, 2014



The Infectious Disease laboratory at UMMS, research focuses on the molecular mechanisms of human autoinflammatory diseases. Autoinflammation is usually caused by dysregulation of innate immune system, particularly that of proinflammatory cytokine production. I am studying a group of autoinflammatory diseases that is caused by dysregulation of IL-1beta. IL-1beta family of proinflammatory cytokines are atypical cytokines that are synthesized as inactive precursors in the cytoplasm.

Maturation and secretion of these cytokines depends on inflammasomes, large protein complexes formed in response to pathogenic infection or tissue damage.  Mutations in genes encoding inflamamsome components that lead to constitutive activation of inflammasome acitivation result in autoinflammatory conditions such as Cryopyrinopathies. Studies of these diseases have greatly advanced our knowledge of inflammasome activation and have lead to the successful treatment of common inflammatory diseases such as gout arthritis with anti-IL-1 therapeutics.


The P/Is current focus is on another autoinflammatory disease-the Mevalonate Kinase Deficiency. Mevalonate pathway is the fundamental metabolic pathway for cholesterol synthesis.



Under the direction of the Principal Investigator or Designee, the Research Associate performs a variety of complex research experiments.


UMass Medical School is committed to being an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer and recognizes the power of a diverse community. We encourage applications from protected veterans, individuals with disabilities and those with varied experiences, perspectives and backgrounds to consider UMass Medical School as their employer of choice.
Review of applications will begin immediately and the position will remain open until filled.




  • Conducts in-depth analysis of research experiments
  • Performs complex laboratory experiments
  • Interprets data, forms conclusion, and decides on and plans next experiments to be done with a high degree of independence
  • Compiles and analyzes data and performs computations using image analysis software, spreadsheets, graphing, and curve fitting software
  • May modify protocols and be responsible for a single, independent research project
  • Assists in writing the text of scientific publications and grants.  Reviews literature
  • Trains new laboratory personnel, students, and collaborators
  • Maintains laboratory supplies and equipment
  • Complies with all safety and infection control standards
  • Perform other duties as required.


  • Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences, or equivalent experience
  • 1 year relevant research experience
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office products
  • Strong ability to analyze complex visual data in a quantitative and objective manner
  • Judgment and action skills required to solve commonly encountered problems



Under the direction of the Principal Investigator, or designee



May functionally supervise Lab Technicians and Aides



Wet chemistry laboratory, and may require appropriate contact with biohazards, radionuclides, toxins, animals, and human specimens.