Postdoctoral Scholar in Computational Modeling and In Vitro Synthetic Biology
University of California Santa Barbara
United States

Postdoctoral Scholar in Computational Modeling and In Vitro Synthetic Biology

Job #JPF01787
  • Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor - Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies

Recruitment Period

Open date: April 22nd, 2020

Next review date: Sunday, May 17, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)

Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Friday, Jul 31, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)

Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


The Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies (ICB) at the University of California, Santa Barbara, is actively seeking a Postdoctoral Scholar to conduct research in computational modeling and in vitro synthetic biology

The positions are officially titled “W.M. Keck Foundation Post-doctoral Scholars,” and are associated with a recently received grant from the Keck Foundation to Professors Omar Saleh and Enoch Yeung at UC Santa Barbara.

The project is focused on discovering, modeling, and controlling the dynamics of self-assembling transcriptionally active DNA to create a first-ever prototype of synthetic chromatin. Research topics of interest within the scope of the project include modeling liquid-liquid phase separation processes, the feedback dynamics and interactions between phase separation and transcriptional regulation, as well as the timing and design of genetic circuitry to govern macro-scale behaviors.

Job Responsibilities:

It is expected that the postdoctoral scholar will work closely with other postdoctoral scholars and Ph.D. students in the project, helping to plan and conduct experiments; analyze experimental data; building a priori (hypothesis driven) and a posteriori (data-driven) models to explore how variations in sequence and control architecture give rise to variations in synthetic chromatin phenotype. The project will be carried out by a team of laboratory researchers along with the two faculty Principal Investigators Enoch Yeung and Omar Saleh.

Basic qualifications

At the time of application, candidates must hold a Ph.D. or be enrolled in a Ph.D. or equivalent international program.

Additional qualifications

PhD in computational biology, engineering with controls or dynamics experience, applied mathematics, or closely related disciplines by time of appointment.

Preferred qualifications

Experience with Python, modeling, wet lab experiments, in vitro DNA-based logic circuits

To apply, please submit an application and the following to

1) An updated CV
2) Cover letter
3) 3 writing samples from within the last 2 years
4) References (contact information, at least 3 required)

Primary consideration/deadline for receiving applications is May 17, 2020. The tentative start date for the position is approximately July 1, 2020, subject to change due to COVID-19 related impacts on research and campus activity.


*Yeung, E., Kundu, S. and Hodas, N., 2019, July. Learning deep neural network representations for Koopman operators of nonlinear dynamical systems. In 2019 American Control Conference (ACC) (pp. 4832-4839).

*Yeung, E., Dy, A.J., Martin, K.B., Ng, A.H., Del Vecchio, D., Beck, J.L., Collins, J.J. and Murray, R.M., 2017. Biophysical constraints arising from compositional context in synthetic gene networks. Cell systems, 5(1), pp.11-24.

*Yeung, E., Ng, A., Kim, J., Sun, Z.Z. and Murray, R.M., 2014, December. Modeling the effects of compositional context on promoter activity in an E. coli extract based transcription-translation system. In 53rd IEEE Conference on Decision and Control (pp. 5405-5412).

The Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies is an Army-sponsored University Affiliated Research Center (UARC). The ICB is a uniquely interdisciplinary research alliance led by the University of California, Santa Barbara, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the California Institute of Technology and partners from the Army and industry.

ICB research is driven by more than 50 premier faculty working together with graduate students project scientist, specialists, and professional researchers as interdisciplinary teams of biologists, chemists, physicists, psychologists, physicians, social scientists, and engineers. These teams develop biologically inspired, revolutionary technological innovations in systems and synthetic biology, materials science and engineering, biotechnology tools and cognitive neuroscience.

The department is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching and service.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Job location

Santa Barbara, CA

Learn More

More information about this recruitment:


  • Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter
  • Writing Samples - 3 writing samples from within the last 2 years
Reference requirements
  • 3-6 required (contact information only)

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