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Marco Lab Junior Specialist

Recruitment Period

Open date: November 26th, 2018
Last review date: December 10th, 2018
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.
Final date: March 31st, 2019
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.


This position will involve research on the genetics and ecology of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in food and digestive tracts. The incumbent will be responsible for performing phenotypic and genetic analyses of LAB to identify and investigate food- and gut- relevant traits. Specific skills in PCR, quantitative PCR, 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis (single genes and bacterial communities), bacterial and yeast culture methods, genetic manipulation of LAB strains (gene deletion and over-expression strains), anti-fungal strain identification, and experience working with fermented foods are required. Additionally, skills in animal husbandry and necropsy as well as in the maintenance of human cell cultures (e.g. Caco-2 cells) are also required. Proficiency with developing and maintaining laboratory safety protocols and recordkeeping is also required. The incumbent will be responsible for executing experimental plans developed in partnership with the PI. He/she will be expected to analyze and interpret data he/she collects and then, through critical thinking, propose next steps (experiments) to be discussed with the PI.
The incumbent will contribute significantly to the advancement of the projects, and creatively contribute proposals of experimental steps that result from research findings. This is an inherently creative process that requires good to excellent experience of the field and appropriate research literature. The Junior Specialist will be actively involved in innovative research that requires him/her to be informed on current findings in the field and will be expected to perform reviews of the literature required for project in question. This person will be expected to participate in the UC Davis and Northern CA chapters of the American Society for Microbiology.

With the assistance of the PI, the junior specialist will be the lead author on a manuscript of his/her work, which is already yielding results that are planned for manuscript preparation within 9-12 months. Beyond this, this person will contribute figures / tables to other manuscripts in the lab and will be included as a co-author on those papers. The junior specialist will attend regional and possibly national scientific conferences to present his research. Pending the availability of university or external travel funds, the incumbent will also apply to attend the American Society for Microbiology conference in 2019. At any and all meetings he attends, he/she will present his research in either poster or presentation formats.

The junior specialist will be expected to provide mentorship to undergraduate students and first year graduate students, training them in microbiology, bioinformatics, and LAB-specific molecular biology laboratory and experimental skills.

Basic Qualifications:
• BS in Microbiology
•1 year post-baccalaureate experience in a scientific research position
• Bacterial and yeast culture methods (growth curves, CFU enumeration, chemical analysis)
• PCR and quantitative real-time PCR
• Species identification by the analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences (bacteria) and ITS (yeast)
• Experience working with fermented foods
• Genetic manipulation of LAB strains (gene deletion and over-expression strains)
• Experience with anti-fungal strain identification protocols

Additional Qualifications:
• Experience in food microbiology research
• Identification of bacteria in mixed communities (HTP DNA sequencing and Qiime bioinformatics)

Preferred Qualifications:
• Proficiency with mouse husbandry and handling and experience in tissue and blood collection
• Proficient with human cell culture maintenance

Note: The junior specialist rank is an entry level position, accordingly it is inappropriate to hire applicants with advanced degrees in this field, or those with bachelor’s degrees and three years’ relevant work experience. (See APM-UCD 330)


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter (Optional)

Reference requirements
  • 1-3 required (contact information only)

How to apply

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  2. Provide required information and documents
  3. If any, provide required reference information
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