Research Assistant / Associate in Pharmacology
University of Cambridge Department of Pharmacology
United Kingdom

Applications are invited for a Dunhill Medical Trust funded Research Associate position in the laboratory of Dr Ewan St. John Smith at the Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge for an immediate start (subject to COVID-19 travel/work conditions). We are looking for a motivated and innovative scientist to carry out on a research project entitled: Naked neurones: how does the naked mole-rat brain stay healthy during ageing? Naked mole-rats are long-lived rodents that experience healthy ageing with no overt neurodegeneration. This project will take a multipronged approach to examine how pathogenic moieties associated with neurodegeneration (e.g. amyloid beta and reactive oxygen species) influence cellular integrity and neuronal excitability, whilst also looking to generate cell lines and organoids to generate and validate genes of interest contributing to neural fitness in naked mole-rats. This project is a collaborative endeavour with the labs of Dr Gabriel Balmus at the UK Dementia Research Institute in Cambridge and Dr Daniel Frankel at the University of Newcastle.

A variety of techniques will be employed, including: neuronal cell culture, electrophysiology, Ca2+-imaging, atomic force microscopy, CRISPR/Cas9 screening and organoid development.

The role holder will be based in central Cambridge. The key duties and responsibilities will include, but are not limited to: developing research objectives and conducting the research project, writing up research work for presentation and publication, continually updating knowledge and understanding in the research field, translating knowledge of advances in the subject area into research activity, managing own research and administrative activities, helping in the supervision of research students in the lab, assisting in the preparation of proposals and applications to external bodies (e.g. for funding and contractual purposes), communicating material of a specialist or highly technical nature.

Applicants should have, or expect to obtain shortly, a PhD in neuroscience or a related discipline. Successful candidates who have not been awarded their PhD by the appointment date will be appointed as a Research Assistant at Grade 5 (£26,715 - £30,942). Upon the award of the PhD the individual will be promoted to Research Associate, Grade 7 (£32,816 - £40,322). Successful candidates will ideally have a background in ageing or neurodegeneration and be expected to have demonstrable experience in one or more of the following areas: neuronal cell culture, electrophysiology, Ca2+-imaging and cell-based screening. You must be a careful and methodical worker, paying attention to accuracy and ready to take responsibility as part of a team. You should be self-motivated and able to organise, perform and analyse experiments with minimal instruction.

The salary range if appointed as a Research Assistant is £26,715- £30,942 per annum and Research Associate is £32,816 - £40,322 per annum

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 36 months

The Department holds an Athena SWAN bronze award, demonstrating a commitment to provide equal opportunities and to advance the representation of women in science subjects. We welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender but, as women are currently under-represented at this level in our department, we strongly encourage applications from female candidates. Appointment will be based on merit alone.

Applications will be assessed as and when they are submitted and it is anticipated that interviews will take place virtually via Zoom in the week commencing July 20th 2020.

Click the 'Apply' button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

The online application is to include your personal details, names and addresses of referees, as well as your CV, research publications list and cover letter.

Informal enquiries about the position can be made to Dr Ewan St. John Smith (

If you have any questions about the application process please contact Debbie Stanley,

Please quote reference PL23270 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Bioloxy


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