Research Assistant, Edible Mushroom and Truffle Cultivation

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
17 Feb 2023
End of advertisement period
31 Mar 2023
Contract Type
Full Time

Job Description

The successful candidate will work as Research Assistant in the ASPIRE Research Institute for Food Security in the Drylands. This institute features a comprehensive and highly interdisciplinary R&D program and provides an international collaboration platform for researchers and stakeholders of the public and private food and agricultural sector. It strives to generate knowledge and technological innovation in support of food security in the UAE and other arid environments of the world. As part of one of its research themes, the institute is aiming at developing advanced technologies for the recycling of organic waste materials into growth substrates for edible mushrooms. To support this research, we are seeking to hire an ambitious Research Assistant. The research involves surveys, site visits, collection and characterization of different promising Ascomycete fungi for biological waste management and mycorrhizal truffle cultivation, with special reference to hypogeous Ascomycetes genera generally found in the arid environments. The work will also involve different Basidiomycota fungi used for biowaste degradation.

The successful candidate is expected to conduct organized research under laboratory conditions to develop mycelia under in vitro culture conditions, by standardizing media compositions. Part of this will be the application of mycelium under specific conditions to targeted bio-substrate for culturing under in vivo conditions in mushroom houses. The candidate should oversee the upkeep and maintenance of mushroom houses and experimental work in vivo on UAEUs research farm in Al Foah. Laboratory experiments will involve the culture of different fungi under in vitro conditions, and standardization of media for efficient growth of mycelia. Candidates should be able to assay different enzymes involved in lignocellulose degradation, and document the results. The daily maintenance of research work book and documentation of results is expected. The results have to be justified by utilizing appropriate statistical methods and interpretations with recent literature. The contract is for nine month, with the possibility of extension on an annual basis.

Minimum Qualification

Master Degree in horticulture, agriculture, biology, or a related discipline.

Preferred Qualification

Master Degree in horticulture, agriculture, biology, or a related discipline with working experience in the concerned field

Expected Skills/Rank/Experience

Applicants should have proven skills in biochemical analysis, enzyme assays, molecular techniques, especially in marker assisted techniques, laboratory skills in various analytical procedures. Experience with mushroom and truffle (ectomycorrhiza) isolation, cultivation and inoculation is of great advantage. Applicants should be able to visit different sites in arid regions for collection of fungi and maintain cultures in the laboratory. Excellent English language and teamworking skills, as well as the ability to work in an international and interdisciplinary research environment are a must.    

Division College of Agricul.&Veterinary Med.
Department Integrative Agriculture- (CAVM)
Job Close Date 31-03-2023
Job Category Academic - Research Assistant
Salary 8000 AED monthly

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