Postdoctoral Scholar - Department of Infectious Diseases UH

Date: December 2019

Title: Postdoc Scholar

Department: Infectious Diseases UH

School: School of Medicine

Location: Biomedical Research Building

Supervisor Name and Title: Carlos Subauste M.D., Professor

 

POSITION OBJECTIVE

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Department of Infectious Diseases, has an immediate opening for a post-doc position. This highly motivated individual will study how the intracellular protozoan Toxoplasma gondii manipulates signaling in host cells to promote its survival. T. gondii is the most common chronic parasitic infection in the world. It is also the most frequent cause of infectious retinitis in the world as well as an important cause of encephalitis. Current antibiotic regimens for toxoplasmosis are problematic either because of side-effects or the lack of proven efficacy. The project aims at identifying novel and improved approaches for treatment of toxoplasmosis based blocking the pro-survival signaling pathways activated by T. gondii in host cells (Host Derived Therapy). The post-doc will work closely with the PI to lead these efforts, and will be responsible for planning and execution of experiments. Lab work will involve tissue culture, in vitro parasite growth assays, gene knockdown, transfections to express mutant signaling proteins, immunofluorescence, confocal and electron microscopy. An important component of the work entails the use of mouse models of toxoplasmosis in transgenic mice with defects in signaling pathways of interest. This work includes histopathologic studies, real time PCR and assays of immune function. Additional projects in the lab include the use of inhibitors of signaling pathways alone or in combination with low dose of antibiotics for treatment of toxoplasmosis in mice. International collaborations are being set up to test the efficacy of host derived therapeutic approaches in patients with toxoplasmosis.

The candidate should be able to work independently, read and critically interpret the literature, assist with designing and planning of projects, oversee collaborations, supervise students, manage animal models, and to carry out research on the assigned project. Importantly, the post-doc must also work well with other team members. The qualified candidate will prepare manuscripts and contribute preliminary data, background and significance and experimental design for grant proposals. The post-doc will be encouraged to apply for grants to gain experience and support future projects.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS

  1. Design, plan and carry out experiments in collaboration with PI. Provide assistance and oversight of staff, and graduate students ensure projects are being completed according to the research plan. Advise/Assist in developing improved techniques, project methods, or procedures.
  2. Present results in laboratory meetings and other scientific meetings.
  3. Plan and execute research in collaboration with other investigators on and off campus.
  4. Develop and adapt laboratory techniques.
  5. Analyze the data generated from these experiments and provide high level analysis to PI.
  6. Perform/supervise rodent husbandry including breeding, genotyping and maintain an accurate animal database.
  7. Develop and maintain an external reputation through activities such as publishing in high quality peer-reviewed journals, refereeing and conference presentations.
  8. Support writing grant applications, research protocols, publications and abstracts.
  9. Oversee general lab operations including inventory, lab organization and maintain certain equipment/facilities. Must demonstrate compliance with policies, procedures and regulations of the Animal Resource Center, IACUC, Animal Welfare Act, Public Health Service Policy, AAALAC guidelines and other applicable regulatory guidelines for which essential training will be provided.  
  10. Assist with management of daily laboratory operations and mentoring of junior trainees and staff.  

NONESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS

  1. Assist to manage lab wastes, organize lab inventory and take care of lab safety.
  2. Perform other duties as assigned.

 

CONTACTS

Department: Continuous contact with Principal Investigator for mentorship and collaboration. Continuous contact with lab members for collaboration (Lab members are encouraged to help, and to ask for help) as well as with department faculty, postdocs, research associates, graduate students, medical fellows, and research assistants. Moderate administrative staff contact to obtain administrative support for research activities.

University: Frequent contact with faculty, research personnel and staff within the School of Medicine Routine contact with Environmental Health and Safety, as well as Animal Research in order to meet regulatory requirements.

External: Continuous contact with collaborators to further our and their research objectives.

Students: Continuous contact with graduate students within the laboratory. Will help manage a student in developing own research projects to further goals of the overall research study. Will also supervise graduate students as they rotate through the laboratory as part of the University’s teaching mission.

 

SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITY

Supervisory responsibilities principally will include mentorship of students in the lab.

 

QUALIFICATIONS

Experience: Graduate degree, PhD, in one of the fields related to biomedical or the life sciences, as preparation for a post-doctoral fellowship in infectious diseases.

Education/Licensing: PhD

Eligibility: U.S. citizens, non-citizen U.S. nationals, or those lawfully admitted for permanent residence (Federal training grant requirement)

 

REQUIRED SKILLS

  1. Ability to work well with others and to work independently. The individual should be able to follow directions and protocols.
  2. Ability to collect and analyze data with attention to detail and do multiple tasks simultaneously.
  3. Maintain a detailed and accurate lab notebook; keep complete records and results of experiments, protocols, and use of animals.
  4. Effective oral and written communication skills. Must be able to effectively communicate with the PI/supervisor as well as other lab members.
  5. Good interpersonal skills; ability to work and communicate with various individuals within and external to the University.
  6.  Good organization skills; ability to multi-task, prioritize and meet deadlines. Must demonstrate attention to detail and accuracy and follow-through on assigned tasks.
  7. Ability to work effectively independently and collaboratively within a team.
  8. Ability to work with sensitive information and maintain confidentiality.
  9. Effective problem-solving skills; must demonstrate good analytical skills, sound judgment and good decision-making.
  10. Ability to rely on and follow instructions and pre-established guidelines to perform the functions of the job.
  11. Ability to operate laboratory equipment and learn to operate new instruments
  12. Familiarity with policies and procedures of lab and chemical safety
  13. Knowledge in Microsoft Office, database applications, and with internet navigation.
  14. Willingness to learn new techniques, procedures, processes, and software programs as needed.

 

WORKING CONDITIONS

The researcher will work at the bench performing experiments that requires long time standing and sitting. Working conditions include exposure to biomedical hazards including Toxoplasma gondii.  The individual will work in a biological laboratory environment (BL2) using universal precautions to minimize risk of bloodborne pathogen exposure. Work will include experiments in the animal room, standing in the laminar flow hood. Working conditions involves walking between different buildings in the University. When needed, must be willing to work outside standard working days or hours as required by the needs of a given experiment and/or the need to accelerate data generation and data collections. The position will involve travel to meetings or conferences if secured travel funding. Applicants are expected to adhere to all CWRU safety practices to maintain a safe work environment.

 

Please send CV to Dr. Carlos Subauste at carlos.subauste@case.edu