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Research Associate-Fixed Term

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Back to search results Apply now Job no: 619147
Work type: Faculty/Academic Staff
Major Administrative Unit / College: College Of Natural Science
Department: Plant Research Laboratory Nat Science 10032674
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Full Time (90-100%), Fixed Term Academic Staff, Research/Scientific, Non-Union

Position Summary

Bacterial microcompartments are organelles composed entirely of protein that enable bacteria to use diverse substrates in nutritionally poor environments, thereby contributing to fitness.  Our group is interested in both fundamental studies of their functional diversity, and their re-design for metabolic engineering and therapeutics.

The postdoctoral position involves protein/enzyme biochemistry, construction of synthetic carboxysome shells and functional and their structural characterization and synthetic biology-based approaches in vitro and in E. coli. 

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work closely with other project team members to iteratively engineer protein shells as part of a design-build-test-learn cycle
  • Work with a multi-disciplinary team of scientists to develop novel approaches to guide and test biological redesign strategies
  • Design and perform engineering (gene manipulation, genome editing) of microbial systems

    • Develop and perform biochemical/permeability assays
    • Develop and translate findings to additional and possibly non-model systems
    • Analyze, interpret and communicate findings in regular group meetings and project team conference calls
  • Keep precise and detailed laboratory notebooks, maintain and manage all resources (e.g. vectors, strains, digital data) generated throughout the project
  • Communicate findings via publications and national meetings


Required Degree


Minimum Requirements

PhD in biochemistry, molecular biology, biophysics or related field. 

Desired Qualifications

We are looking for highly motivated candidates with a strong background in molecular biology and/or biochemistry who can interact collaboratively among a variety of disciplines. Experience in protein/cellular imaging, bioinformatics or enzyme characterization is desirable.  We offer a highly stimulating interdisciplinary research environment, excellent working conditions and facilities.


  • Demonstrated ability to independently carry out creative research with tenacity and of the highest quality standards.  This includes experimental design, trouble shooting, interpretation of data and the ability to situate results in the context of the broader goals of the project.
  • Experience in overexpression and purification of proteins/enzymes
  • Experience in genetic manipulation of microorganisms
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct and perform collaborative research and effectively interact with a broad range of colleagues
  • Ability to organize and present reports to collaborators and sponsors.
  • Ability to work independently and as a team member in a diverse team environment.
  • Experience and skill in preparing research publications
  • Experience in one or more of the following:  synthetic biology or bioengineering, protein design, high-throughput approaches to cloning and imaging, enzymology or biophysical characterization of macromolecular complexes.

Required Application Materials

CV and cover letter required.

Review of Applications Begins On



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