Post-Doctoral Research Associate in Comprehensive Cancer Centre

London (Greater)
£38,304 - £ 45,026 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
Thursday, 22 April 2021
End of advertisement period
Sunday, 16 May 2021
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Job description
We are seeking a highly motivated and talented postdoctoral researcher to join Dr. Simon Poland’s advanced imaging group at the Comprehensive Cancer Centre at King’s College London. Building on previously conducted research at King’s college London, the selected candidate will work closely with our  team to develop novel optical imaging strategies to enable the complete optical interrogation of tumour derived spheroid models, to understand how cancer cells are able to dissociate from the primary tumour, evade immune surveillance and invade surrounding tissues.   
Collaborating with several cancer research scientists at King’s, tumour spheroid cultures will be constructed to closely imitate the tumour microenvironment and several key interactions between cancer cells, other constituent cells and the extracellular matrix in the tumour microenvironment will be investigated. 
The successful candidate must have attained a PhD degree (or close to completion) in Physics, Engineering, Mathematics or related subject. The post holder will be required to design, develop, and be responsible for the delivery of internationally competitive research. Emphasis is placed on highly motivated, team-oriented, creative individuals able to independently tackle original scientific projects.  
The appointee should have hands-on experience in optical cell and tissue imaging e.g. confocal microscopy. Expertise on the use of, design and construction of advanced optical imaging platforms are essential. Individuals with previous experience in either Light-sheet microscopy, adaptive optics or Fluorescence lifetime imaging are encouraged to apply. Additional experience in programming (Python, Matlab, C++) and image data analysis is also desirable. Excellent communication skills are essential, and you should be keen to develop project/team leadership skills, and to establish bridges between the physical and life sciences. There may also be additional opportunities to engage in a range of complementary projects active in Dr. Poland’s group, to further explore and grow your own research interests and portfolio.  
This post will be initially offered on a fixed-term contract for 24 months, with the possibility of renewal.
This is a full-time post - 100% full time equivalent.

Key responsibilities

  • Develop advanced imaging platforms for 3D Cell culture imaging  
  • To work with others in the broader research environment to develop novel imaging methodologies for functional imaging of Spheroid and organoid 3D tissue models 
  • Develop data analysis methods appropriate for 3D imaging 
  • To write publications for appropriate scientific journals and to present research findings at scientific meetings 
  • Support and nurture staff to independence to achieve their potential whilst further developing my leadership skills  
  • Participate in project meetings, including symposia and workshops. 
  • Collaborate with physicists and biologists at KCL 
  • Write up results of your own research 
  • Liaise with internal and external research colleagues and support staff on research matters 
  • Make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding and form relationships for future collaboration 
  • Communicate material of a specialist or highly technical nature 
  • Plan own research and co-ordinate work with that of others to avoid conflict or duplication of effort 
  • Make use of novel and innovative research techniques and methods 
  • Deal with problems which may affect the achievement of research objectives and deadlines 
  • Contribute to collaborative decisions making affecting the work of the team 
  • Actively participate as a member of the Comprehensive Cancer Centre 
  • Collaborate with academic colleagues on areas of shared research interest 
  • Attend and contribute to relevant meetings 
  • To demonstrate a willingness to develop personal objectives via regular appraisals with an academic mentor 

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.  
Skills, knowledge, and experience 

Essential criteria 
1.       BSc in Physics, engineering or related subject  
2.       Ph.D. in Physics, engineering or related subject (either completed or near completion) 
3.       Knowledge and experience in advanced microscopy Imaging platforms 
4.      Prior use and development of advanced optical imaging techniques 
5.       Flexible and collaborative  
6.      Willingness to learn new skills  
7.       Hands-on experience on optical cell and tissue imaging e.g. confocal microscopy  
8.      Mechanical and/or optical design experience 
9.      Ability to work independently and as part of a team  
10.   Commitment to high quality research  
11.    Ability to prioritise work 
12.    Communication with researchers in other fields 
Desirable criteria 
1.       Programming and computational analysis 
2.       Previous experience in either Light-sheet microscopy, adaptive optics or FLIM  
3.       Good presentation skills 
4.      Experience in cell preparation and cell culture 
5.       Tenacity to conduct a project 
*Please note that this is a PhD level role but candidates who have submitted their thesis and are awaiting award of their PhDs will be considered. In these circumstances the appointment will be made at Grade 5, spine point 30 with the title of Research Assistant. Upon confirmation of the award of the PhD, the job title will become Research Associate and the salary will increase to Grade 6. 
Further information
Recognised as one of the leading cancer research centres in Europe, the Comprehensive cancer centre where this fellowship will be based has a multidisciplinary research portfolio which spans the entire patient cancer journey. By fostering a culture of innovation in cancer patient care through research excellence, we aim to break down traditional clinical and academic boundaries and draw together members of the Division and our associated major NHS partners to achieve a fully integrated cancer research pathway. This is reflected in the coordinated strategic planning that provides the foundations for our KHP Cancer Centre.  
The Centre's core strengths are in cancer genomics, haemato-oncology, breast cancer biology, epidemiology, cancer cell biology and gastro-intestinal cancer. It plays host to a number of specialist research centres; including a Breakthrough Breast Cancer Research Unit, Comprehensive Cancer Imaging Centre, Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre and the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre. Together with the resources of our Bio-Banks, the fluid interaction between the various departments provides us with substantial capabilities for the delivery of translational research activity that serves to define future pathways for the treatment of cancer. 
We are focused on recruiting and supporting the highest calibre staff and promote equality of opportunity by ensuring that current and prospective members of staff are treated solely on the basis of merit, ability, and potential without any discrimination. We promote a positive working, learning, and social environment free from prejudice, harassment, or bullying. We are actively involved in the Athena SWAN initiative, a charter which recognises excellence in an institution's commitment to gender equality in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) subjects, and we obtained an Athena SWAN Bronze award in 2015 in recognition of our activities. More information about the charter can be found here: We expect all members of staff to engage with and apply the principles of Athena SWAN. 

Similar jobs

Similar jobs