Laboratory Research Scientist

This is a rolling advert that will be reviewed monthly and will close once we have found the successful applicant.

Key information

Job reference
R489
Salary
Laboratory Research Scientist: £28,150 - £34,500.Senior Laboratory Research Scientist: £35,500 - £42,250.The position and salary will depend on the relevant experience.
Application close date
31 December 2022, 00:01 GMT
Hours per week
36 (full time)
Posted 18 November 2021
Background texture taken from the lab imagery.

Job title:

Lab Research Scientist or Senior Lab Research Scientist

Reports to:

Anne O’Garra, Senior Group Leader, Laboratory of Immunoregulation & Infection

Closing date and time:

This is a rolling advert that will be reviewed monthly and will close once we have found the successful applicant

Contact term:

This is a full-time, fixed term (30 months with the possibility of extending for an additional 6 months dependent on funding)/ on Crick terms and conditions of employment.

Project summary and responsibility of the position

The laboratory focuses on the study of the regulation of the immune response during immune challenge and infection of the lung and gut, with a major focus on immune effector molecules called cytokines and their downstream pathways.  The aim of the lab is to identify

immune cells and pathways contributing to protection and pathogenesis in infectious diseases including factors: (1) determining disease outcome using M. tuberculosis infected TB resistant and susceptible mice where the blood transcriptomic RNA signature resembles human TB disease; and (2) leading to or controlling pathology in models of infection of the gut, including with T. gondii and H. hepaticus.

The aims of this project are to validate new targets of disease outcome, identified by RNA-sequencing or flow cytometry analyses, through advanced immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence analyses:

  • Advancing our knowledge of lung and gut tissue during infection using immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence techniques
  • Applying microscopy techniques for analysing and capturing data from tissue immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence
  • Help in development of the histological approaches for spatial transcriptomics

The project will require processing of tissues from in vivo mouse models and testing of antibodies directed against target immune cell populations in formalin fixed paraffin embedded (FFPE) sections. These will include lungs from M. tuberculosis infected TB resistant and susceptible mice in close collaboration with a Senior Postdoc in the Lab and a Principal Lab Research Scientist, who will conduct all the mouse in vivo TB experiments. The position will also support similar analysis of other infections, mainly of the gut (FFPE or frozen sections), including Helicobacter hepaticus and Toxoplasma gondii infected mice, where we wish to validate targets and pathways that control different forms of pathology. This will be in close collaboration with two Postdoctoral Fellows who will perform the in vivo experiments. Pathology will be in collaboration with Senior Lab Research Scientist who strategically organises all gene-deficient mouse colonies and additionally is an experienced molecular immunologist also expert at isolating and preparing gut tissues for histopathology analysis from infected mice.

The main responsibility of the position is to develop and apply immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence analysis of lung or gut sections to validate key targets and pathways to further our understanding of immune factors dictating protection or pathogenesis in experimental infection models. All histopathology analyses will be conducted in close collaboration with certified veterinary pathologists and our Crick Experimental Histopathology Science Technology Platform.

Once these techniques and their development is in place and being executed, the position will additionally help in developing sections and processing from the above infection models for spatial transcriptomics, to more deeply interrogate the expression of potential targets of protection or pathogenesis spatially within the tissue (this in close collaboration with Professor Francesca Ciccarelli at The Crick; The manuscript “Method to analyse single cell data, including spatial transcriptomics data” can be found in the following link:

https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.04.01.437886v2

The successful applicant will have the opportunity to apply their skills and help to develop additional cutting-edge state-of-the-art technologies, to these important problems of immunoregulation in chronic infections and immunopathologies advancing the research programme of the lab. The O’Garra Laboratory of Immunoregulation and Infection, together with the Crick STPs and collaborators will provide an excellent environment for the candidate to further develop cutting edge state-of-the-art skills which will underpin their future career development.

The lab uses an extensive set of techniques for studying immune responses in vivo to infectious pathogens in the blood and tissues. The lab members are expert in a broad range of techniques which include:

  • Broad range of immunological techniques including flow cytometry
  • Immunohistochemistry techniques of lung and gut tissue which are being further developed also to include spatial transcriptomics
  • Transcriptomics - RNA-sequencing (bulk and single cell-RNA-Seq) of blood, whole tissue and/or purified cellular populations
  • Genomics approaches using ATAC-Sequencing to identify transcriptional pathways and targets of immunoregulation during infection
  • State-of-the-art bioinformatics techniques to analyse complex data from the above approaches and integrate these data together to link different immune factors, pathways and molecules with disease condition.

Our work is supported by excellent Crick Science Technology Platforms.

You can find the general description of the O’Garra laboratory in this link:

https://www.crick.ac.uk/research/labs/anne-ogarra

The ability to work in a team is essential.

Key responsibilities

These include but are not limited to:

  • Processing lung and/or gut tissue from infection models and developing immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence methods for analysis of immune targets identified by RNA-Sequencing
  • Processing lung and/or gut tissue from infection models for spatial transcriptomics

Key experience and competencies

Essential

Lab Research Scientist

  • Experience in histology techniques
  • Good knowledge and experience of processing tissue from experimental models for immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence analysis
  • Excellent expertise in developing immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence techniques and analysis
  • PhD in in vivo biology with a substantial focus on immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence techniques and analysis - or in the final stages of PhD submission – or extensive relevant lab experience without a PhD
  • Excellent organisational skills
  • Ability to work independently on delivering and developing histology techniques
  • Capable of interacting and collaborating with diverse lab members within our group

Desirable

  • Experience in research with in vivo mouse models
  • Experience in flow cytometry
  • Experience with confocal microscopy and other advanced light microscopy methods
  • Experience with imaging processing and analysis programs, i.e. Image FIJI
  • Experience and knowledge of immunology – although not essential