Research Officer in Molecular Microbiology

Sydney, Australia
13 Apr 2018
End of advertisement period
27 Apr 2018
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Macquarie is the university of pioneering minds. Globally recognised as one of Australia's leading research universities, Macquarie is a place where extraordinary new possibilities come to light. We've helped people to hear, introduced wireless internet technology to the world and broken through traditional boundaries by appointing Australia's first female vice-chancellor.

At Macquarie you'll join a vibrant community of diverse perspectives, all working towards a brighter future for our communities and our planet. Surrounded by beautiful parkland campus, our students and staff are free to explore and discover, supported by facilities including a high-tech library, private teaching hospital, gym and pools, childcare facilities, a campus train station and the newly expanded Macquarie Centre shopping complex next door. 

In Macquarie's Faculty of Science and Engineering you'll join passionate researchers and educators blazing new trails in the spirit of discovery and exploration. Encouraged to think boldly, and supported by some of Australia's most outstanding facilities, brilliant minds converge in our faculty to create incredible new possibilities: the world's first attempt to synthesize complex life, the creation of Wi-Fi, the discovery of dancing dwarf galaxies, and the development of blue LED light. Inspired by challenge and opportunity, we look forward to welcoming you as we imagine a new future together. Join us and start seeing the world in a different light. 

About the Role 

The Department of Molecular Sciences (MolSci) is currently seeking a full-time, suitably qualified, Research Officer with molecular microbiology experience to contribute to our work on ‘Improving the efficacy of pseudomonas biocontrol bacteria’ which is part of a DISCOVERY PROJECT 2016-18, reporting to Distinguished Professor Ian Paulsen and DECRA Fellow, Dr Sasha Tetu.

About the Project

Pseudomonas biocontrol bacteria offer the potential to suppress agricultural crop pathogens without the need for expensive and potentially harmful agrochemicals. However, the application of these bacteria in the field is currently limited. A key reason for this is their unreliable capacity for root colonisation and persistence. This project will characterise the genetic basis for colonisation and persistence on plant seeds and roots by biocontrol bacteria. This work aims to inform and facilitate the successful application of biocontrol bacteria to Australian crops to protect them from pathogens.

Key Responsibilities will involve:

  • Generating unmarked deletion mutants in P. protegens Pf-5.
  • Phenotypic characterization of mutants, looking particularly at social behaviors, including swimming and swarming motility and biofilm formation. 
  • RNA-Seq analysis of gene knockout mutants.
  • Bioinformatic characterization of global regulatory systems.

Selection Criteria

To be considered for this position applications must respond to the selection criteria below and attach as a separate document in the application process.


  • Degree in molecular biology, microbiology or a related discipline (preferably Honours/Master’s degree)
  • Working understanding of the principles of molecular biology
  • Experience using molecular microbiology techniques in a laboratory setting (minimum 1 year)
  • A track record working both as an independent researcher and in a team-based environment.
  • Excellent communication skills, with an ability to relate to and engage with other staff and students


  • Previous work experience with Pseudomonas spp.
  • Bioinformatics skills
  • Previous work experience with RNA

For further information regarding this role please view the position description below.

Salary Package: From $70,699 to $80,381 p.a. (Hew 5), plus 9.5% employer's superannuation and annual leave loading.

Appointment Type: Full-time (1 year fixed-term), with the possibility of extension.

Specific Role Enquiries:

  • Distinguished Professor Ian Paulsen on ext. 8152 or email on
  • Dr Sasha Tetu on ext. 8155 or email on

Applications Closing Date: Friday, 27 April 2018 at 11:55pm AEST

Macquarie University is an EO Employer committed to diversity and social inclusion. Applications are encouraged from people with a disability; women (particularly for senior and non-traditional roles); Indigenous Australians, people who identify as GLBTI; and those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Applications need to be submitted through the Macquarie University online recruitment system. Where circumstances such as disability or remote location prohibit your access to our online system please contact the enquiries person listed in this advertisement for assistance.

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