Senior Research Assistant in Molecular Microbiology

Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear (GB)
£31,642 - £38,093
15 Sep 2023
End of advertisement period
16 Oct 2023
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time


We are seeking a highly committed, motivated and creative scientist to deliver a highly innovative research project entitled "A testable hypothesis for lipoprotein-driven bacterial outer membrane evolution”. The project is funded by a BBSRC Pioneer Award, a new scheme which supports original, early-stage research with the potential to transform our fundamental understanding of biological systems. This project will exploit different strategies for enhancing and monitoring lipoprotein secretion by Geobacillus stearothermophilus. The consequences of lipoprotein hyper-secretion will be investigated to determine the extent to which cell surface-reassociation of lipoproteins may direct the formation of a ‘proto-outer membrane’. This will provide proof-of-concept data to support a significant new hypothesis to describe the mechanism of outer membrane evolution, a fundamentally important step in bacterial evolution and diversification.

For further detail see the job description.

The post is a fixed term for 12 months.


This research project is being delivered within the excellent facilities of the Exploring and Exploiting Microbial Diversity research group of the Department of Applied Sciences (, a biomedical research environment that was recently rated 4* (“world leading”) as part of the Unit of Assessment 3 submission to the REF2021 Research Excellence Framework. The project will be supervised by the Principal Investigator, Professor Iain Sutcliffe, and Co-Investigator, Dr Paul James.


Applicants should hold (or be about to obtain) a PhD in molecular microbiology, biochemistry or a related subject and have demonstrable specialist expert knowledge in bacterial cell biology and the genetic manipulation of bacteria. Expertise in protein biochemistry and/or transmission electron microscopy is also desirable. You should be able to work independently and as part of a team. Excellent communication (written and oral), multi-tasking abilities and organisation skills are required. 

Further information about the requirements of the role is available in the person specification.

If you would like an informal discussion about the role, please contact Professor Iain Sutcliffe (

To apply for this vacancy please click 'Apply Now'. Your application should include a covering letter including a narrative summary of your research experience (2 pages maximum) and a CV.


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We are an on-campus organisation where colleagues work regular patterns of hours and on campus, with some flexibility on the timing of their hours and the location of their work in discussion with their manager. 

Northumbria University is committed to creating an inclusive culture where we take pride in, and value, the diversity of our staff.  We encourage and welcome applications from all members of the community.  The University holds a bronze Athena Swan award in recognition of our commitment to advancing gender equality, we are a Disability Confident Employer, a member of the Race Equality Charter and are participating in the Stonewall Diversity Champion Programme.  We also hold the HR Excellence in Research award for implementing the concordat supporting the career Development of Researchers and are members of the Euraxess initiative to deliver information and support to professional researchers.  

The University has implemented a range of flexible working arrangements, and we are happy to explore candidate requirements as part of the recruitment process.