Lab Administrator and Staff Scientist

California, United States
29 Oct 2018
End of advertisement period
29 Dec 2018
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Full Time

Caltech is a world-renowned science and engineering institute that marshals some of the world's brightest minds and most innovative tools to address fundamental scientific questions. We thrive on finding and cultivating talented people who are passionate about what they do. Join us and be a part of the diverse Caltech community.

Job Summary

The Van Valen lab uses the latest advances in imaging, genomics, and machine-learning to understand how host cells and their viruses process information. We are seeking to hire a Lab Administrator/Staff Scientist to spearhead our efforts to understand information transmission in anti-viral signaling networks.

Job Duties

Specifically, this person will be responsible for ensuring stocks of laboratory supplies, maintaining equipment, and overseeing finances and spending on each project thus assuring proper resource allocation for the laboratory group. In addition, the candidate will develop and optimize methods for systematically measuring signaling networks, chromatin state, and gene expression in single cells. This work will include design of experiments to use live-cell reporters to monitor multiple signaling networks simultaneously in single cells. This work will involve molecular cloning, tagging of endogenous with fluorescent proteins using CRISPR-mediated gene targeting, as well as other exogenous gene expression methods. The successful candidate will design and perform traditional bulk sequencing methods (RNA-Seq, ATAC-Seq, etc) to profile cell state changes, implement recent methods for measuring gene expression in single cells (seqFISH), and develop new methods to monitor chromatin state in single cells. The work will also include assisting lab members in designing and performing arrayed and pooled imaging based CRISPRi screens. Training in established techniques will be provided as needed, but the work will require significant independence of day-to-day operations to achieve the overall goals of the project.

As Lab Administrator, the successful candidate will coordinate with researchers in the group in organizing daily laboratory operations to ensure timely and effective completion of project goals. This individual will track needs for day-to-day lab operations and effectively addresses issues that arise, order lab supplies and equipment as needed by the group while tracking resources and finances for each project, communicate with vendors regarding reagent and equipment purchases, service contracts, maintenance and repairs, and prepare, order, and maintain stocks of necessary reagents, solutions and supplies. In addition, the Lab Administrator will maintain a detailed plan to ensure successful and timely completion of required tasks and attend team meetings to summarize and integrate key results.

As Staff Scientist, the successful candidate will design and perform bench level experiments and projects that support the overall research objective of an integrative computational and experimental lab in a fast paced and dynamic environment. This individual will develop and optimize methods for expressing multiple live-cell reporters in single cells. This individual will also develop protocols for monitoring the immune response with both bulk and single-cell genomics technologies. These assays will include, but are not limited to, RNA-Seq, ATAC-Seq, ChIP-Seq, flow cytometry, RNA FISH, and seqFISH. In addition, techniques including, but not limited to, qPCR, immunostaining, and functional readouts will be required for quality control assessment. The successful candidate will interact directly with senior members of the research team and lab head to ensure proper experimental design, analysis, and technical concerns related to the project. The candidate will adapt easily to changing needs and priorities, facilitate project completion, address technical problems, and summarize and present results. Training will be provided as needed.

Basic Qualifications

  •  Graduate degree in biology or related field.
  • Must possess at least 5 years of experience in a research laboratory.
  • Solid technical knowledge of molecular cloning, cell biology techniques, and mammalian tissue culture.
  • Familiarity and hands-on experience with molecular biological methods and the operation of standard lab equipment.
  • Excellent organization and time management skills.
  • Must be able to use sound judgment to handle a variety of tasks and to shift priorities simultaneously, as well as to effectively solve problems.
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to interact professionally with all levels of staff and with external contacts in a fast-paced environment.
  • Must possess a high level of initiative and the ability to work with little supervision.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Direct laboratory experience involving molecular cloning, synthetic biology, or cell biology.
  • Broad knowledge of cell biology, cloning, gene synthesis, and/or gene targeting approaches.
  • Basic knowledge of sequence analysis tools such as BLAST, primer3, UCSC genome browser, and other applications.
  • Programming experience in Python and/or MATLAB.
  • Excellent understanding of biosafety protocols.
  • 5 years of experience in a research laboratory in an independent project.
  • Solid familiarity with:
  • microscopy, including fluorescence and confocal microscopy.
  • next generation sequencing methods.
  • cellular transfection and gene perturbation methods including CRISPRi.
  • technical knowledge of cell biology techniques, mammalian tissue culture, and sterile techniques.
  • lenti-viral vectors.
  • mammalian viruses.

Required Documents

  • Resume