Research Specialist – Anatomy and Cell Biology (Cornell and Van Otterloo Labs) – The University of Iowa – Iowa City, IA

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The University of Iowa

The Carver College of Medicine Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology is seeking a Research Specialist to investigate the development of the face using mouse (Van Otterloo lab), zebrafish (Cornell lab), and cell culture models (Cornell lab).

Duties to Include:

  • Research Overview – Conduct laboratory experiments in a variety of settings and areas (molecular and cellular biology, cell culture systems edited with Cas9, and animal procedures, as detailed below). The overall objective of the project is to assess the role of protein methyl transferase 1 (PRMT1) and PRMT5 in the gene regulatory network governing differentiation of oral epithelium in embryos (mouse), in external skin (in zebrafish) and in oral squamous cell carcinoma (from adult patients).
    • Potential experiments include:
      • Dissecting mouse embryos from pregnant mice at embryonic day 12 and subjecting the embryos to genotyping and histology
      • Carrying out CRISPR/Cas9-mediated excision of PRMT1 and PRMT5 from a human oral epithelium cell line
      • Carrying out ChIP-seq and ATAC on from a human oral epithelium cell line (wild-type and PRMT1/5 deleted)
      • Culturing explants of oral squamous cell carcinoma samples from the clinic, and measuring growth of the cells in response to PRMT inhibitors
      • Isolating GFP-positive cells from transgenic zebrafish embryos, and conducting RNA-seq, ATAC-seq and CUT&RUN on the cells
  • Conduct Experiments
    • Independence in conducting standard biochemical and molecular experiments is required
      • Ability to isolate DNA and RNA from samples and a thorough understanding of quantitative PCR is required
      • Experience with histology, immunohistochemistry and/or RNA in situ hybridization, is required
    • In vivo animal procedures are an important portion of this position. Experience in animal handling is required, experience with mice is required
    • The candidate will:
      • Assist with, and eventually independently perform, surgical dissection of mouse embryos from pregnant dams
      • Perform mouse crosses
  • Experiments, Investigations, Evaluations
    • Candidates must be able to learn to read and understand scientific protocols, arrange and plan daily activities to optimize efficiency and results, be familiar with a wide variety of equipment and techniques, and adhere to all safety guidelines
    • Experience in the development and refining of experimental protocols is highly desired
  • Administrative and Project Management
    • Organize laboratory samples and reagents in a systematic fashion
    • Prepare lab materials and reagents for shipping to various collaborating labs and corporations outside of UIowa as requested
  • Analyze and Summarize Data; Prepare Reports; Contribute to Manuscripts and Publications
    • Candidates are required to be able to independently execute experiments, with minimal oversight
    • Gather, analyze, interpret, and critically evaluate research data is required
    • Collect and record large amounts of data, while remaining organized and able to assist in organization of the lab in general with the PI
    • Present work both formally to the entire laboratory group and informally as needed/indicated
    • Assist in the preparation of publications and present at local/national meetings
  • Facilities and Equipment Management
    • Assist in the running, calibration, and maintenance of laboratory equipment
    • Test new equipment, troubleshoot, and resolve complex equipment failures and repairs
  • Supervision/Staffing
    • Supervised directly by the principal investigator
    • May train, provide direction, assignments, and mentorship to research interns and students who rotate through the laboratory
  • Collaboration and Embracing Diversity
    • Ability to work with a variety of individuals and groups in a constructive and civil manner while appreciating the unique contribution of individuals from varied cultures, race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, disability, sexual orientation, and gender identity
  • Positive Impact/Achieving Results
    • Ability to utilize existing resources and learning to achieve or exceed desired outcomes of current and future organizational goals/needs
    • Ability to demonstrate ethical behavior in diverse situations while producing results
  • Service Excellence/Customer Focus
    • Ability to meet or exceed customer service needs and expectations and provide excellent service in a direct or indirect manner. Ability to effectively transmit and interpret information through appropriate communication with internal and external customers

Percent of Time: 100%

Pay Grade: 5A –

Type of Position: Specified Term/ One Year

Benefits Highlights:

  • Regular salaried position located in Iowa City, Iowa
  • Fringe benefit package including paid vacation; sick leave; health, dental, life and disability insurance options; and generous employer contributions into retirement plans
  • For more information about Why Iowa?, click here

Required Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in biomedical-related science, cell biology, physiology, biochemistry, molecular biology or related field or an equivalent combination of education and experience in a relevant field of study
  • Minimum of three years research related work experience
  • Independence in performing basic biology laboratory techniques is required
  • Experience in handling and conducting survival experiments on mice is required
  • Knowledge of laboratory etiquette, strong interpersonal skills, and excellent written and verbal skills are also required
  • Basic computer skills including document formatting and page layout, advanced spreadsheet abilities, standard use of presentation software for communication of results during lab meetings, familiarity with various other standard applications (email, image processing, etc) are required

Desirable Qualifications

  • Experience with genomic methods, including RNA seq, CHIP-seq or ATAC-seq is desired
  • Working with cell lines in tissue culture will be part of this position. Knowledge of CRISPR/Cas9 methods is desired

Application Process: In order to be considered, applicants must upload a CV or resume (under submission relevant materials) that clearly address how they meet the listed required and desired qualifications of this position.

Job openings are posted for a minimum of 14 calendar days.

The department intends to hire for one position from either Research Assistant, requisition 21001452, Research Associate, requisition 21001454 or Research Specialist, requisition 21001460, based on the qualifications of the successful candidate. Please apply to the specific position for which you wish to be considered.

Successful candidates will be subject to a criminal background check. This position is not eligible for University sponsorship for employment authorization.