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Research Assistant/Associate

  • Application Deadline
    Deadline:
    06 December 2022
  • Job Salary
    £27,929 to £42,155 Starting salary for applicants with a PhD is £34,308
  • Website
  • Contact Name
    Contact:
    Human Resources


A Research Associate is required to join the Thaventhiran lab at the MRC Toxicology Unit to develop novel methods for the generation of single-cell transcriptomic data at the level of the individual T or B lymphocyte clone. The post will be ideal for an experienced molecular biologist or cell biologist keen to develop skills and experience in single-cell RNA sequencing. However, motivated candidates with a strong background in transcriptome library generation, mathematics/statistics, species ecology, or other relevant background, who are keen to develop experience are encouraged to apply.

The group contrasts the adaptive immune response of infection with sterile inflammatory challenges such as cancer and toxic injury. Our investigation of rare patients with monogenic causes of immune dysregulation has identified a number of genes that are immune checkpoints, since their loss-of function leads to adaptive immune cell activation ( Spencer et al., 2019; Thaventhiran et al., 2020; Tuijnenburg et al., 2018). This has generated hypotheses regarding how the consequences of antigen-receptor signalling are modified by immune checkpoints. We have studied lymphocytes clonally responding to specific challenges, using single-cell RNA sequencing, in both mouse and human samples. This has expanded to include data investigating the anti-COVID-19 antigen-specific cellular immune response (Buckland et al., 2020) and currently the lab is leading the SCORPIO study. (https://www.ukri.org/news/five-new-covid-19-vaccine-research-projects-announced/)

Applicants must hold, or be close to completing, a PhD in a relevant discipline. The ability to work independently as well as part of a team is essential, together with excellent communication and critical thinking skills.

Appointment at Research Associate is dependent on having a PhD. Where a PhD has yet to be awarded or submitted, appointment will initially be made as a Research Assistant and amended to Research Associate when the PhD is awarded.

Further information on the Toxicology Unit can be found at (https://www.mrc-tox.cam.ac.uk)

Relevant publications:

Buckland MS, Galloway JB, Fhogartaigh CN, Thaventhrian J.E., (2020) Treatment of COVID-19 with remdesivir in the absence of humoral immunity: a case report. Nat Commun 11:6385.

Spencer, S., Kostel Bal, S., Egner, W., Lango Allen, H., Raza, S.I., Ma, C.A., Gurel, M., Zhang, Y., Sun, G., Sabroe, R.A., Thaventhiran, J. (2019). Loss of the interleukin-6 receptor causes immunodeficiency, atopy, and abnormal inflammatory responses. J Exp Med 216, 1986-1998.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 3 years in the first instance.

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