Senior Research Assistant - Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear (GB)
£28,553 - £34,702
27 Aug 2020
End of advertisement period
06 Oct 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

*Northumbria University recruitment portal is currently unavailable. If you wish to apply for a vacancy or if you have applied for a vacancy in the last six weeks but have not heard anything from us please e-mail your CV and Covering Letter to using the vacancy reference number as the subject. Thank you for your patience.*

The Forens-OMICS team, led by Dr Noemi Procopio at Northumbria University, is looking for a highly motivated, self-driven, creative, and interactive scientist, to join the team as a Senior Research Assistant for 18 months, which, subject to satisfactory progress, can be extended up to 40 months of contract.

The successful candidate will work on the Forensic-OMICS project, which has been awarded by Dr Procopio and funded by the prestigious UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship scheme, that consists in the first global application of several "omics" technologies aimed to address ageing phenomena primarily for forensic applications, but also for archaeological ones. The appointed candidate will apply genomics/methylomics, proteomics and metabolomics/lipidomics methodologies to human forensic and archaeological samples; the ultimate goal will be the development of a mathematical model, using machine learning algorithms, able to estimate the time elapsed since death and the chronological age of the victim in a precise and reliable manner. 

The project boasts several outstanding international collaborators such as the directors of two Human Taphonomy Facilities in Tennessee (Dr Dawnie Steadman) and in Texas (Dr Daniel Wescott), several experts in the field of metabolomics applied to decomposing cadavers (Dr Natalie Langley from Mayo Clinic Arizona and Dr Beatrix Dudzik from Lincoln Memorial University Tennessee), and a commercial partner leader in the field of mass spectrometry and data analysis (Waters UK). Principal Investigator on the project is Dr Noemi Procopio, who has strong expertise in forensic taphonomy and in forensic proteomics, whereas Co-Investigator on the project is Dr Edward Schwalbe, who has extensive experience in bioinformatics and in biomarker identification and their integration into routinely-applicable assay development.

Qualified applicants will have a PhD and multiple publications in a peer-reviewed journal. Salary and benefit levels will be commensurate with the experience of the applicant. Candidates with an excellent understanding of molecular biology and/or biochemistry, and with a good understanding of bioinformatics and knowledge of data analysis of large data sets are strongly encouraged to apply. The successful candidate will be an experienced scientist with ideally previous experience in genomics, proteomics and/or lipidomics. Previous experience on research projects including planning, conducting, and leading on the analysis of collected data is essential, as well as on supervising/teaching other team members with various research needs. The candidates should hold, or be close to completion of, a PhD in biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, biotechnology, bioinformatics or related subjects. Additionally, the ability to work on different projects and to prioritise the tasks in response to deadlines, together with outstanding personal initiative and communication skills are required.

The successful candidate will have the chance to work in a multidisciplinary and stimulating environments, the possibility to travel, both in UK and overseas, to conduct fieldwork and to attend conferences and workshops, the opportunity to lead/collaborate on papers and grant writing and to contribute towards planning, organising and running events such as conferences or other academic and public events to maximise networking opportunities and to boost his/her academic career.

For an informal discussion about the post, please contact Noemi Procopio at

To apply for this vacancy please click 'Apply Now', and submit a Covering Letter and your CV, including a full list of publications where relevant and any documents specifically requested in the Role Description and Person Specification, such as a sample of written work or journal article.

If you are successful in your application for this role, you will be employed by Northumbria University Services Limited.  Further details can be found at

Northumbria University takes pride in, and values, the quality and diversity of our staff. We welcome applications from all members of the community. The University holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award in recognition of our commitment to improving employment practices for the advancement of gender equality and is a member of the Euraxess network, which delivers information and support to professional researchers.

Please note that if you do not have permission to work in the UK, Northumbria University may not be able to obtain a Certificate of Sponsorship for you to take up this position.

Please note this vacancy will close on 06/10/2020