PDRA - Room temperature fragment screening, beamline VMXi
Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Oxfordshire
Salary £33,963 - £39,955 per annum
Full time / Flexible hours considered
18 months fixed term
Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron science facility. By accelerating electrons to near light-speed, Diamond generates brilliant beams of light from infra-red to X-rays which are used for academic and industry research and development across a range of scientific disciplines including biology and medicine, physics and chemistry, materials science, engineering, geology, and environmental sciences.
Diamond is one of the most advanced scientific facilities in the world, and its pioneering capabilities and talented staff are helping to keep the UK at the forefront of scientific research.
About the Role
We now have an excellent opportunity for a Post-Doctoral Research Associate (PDRA) to conduct world-leading research aimed at developing room temperature fragment screening into a key tool for the development of new therapies.
This role is part of a major EU funded international project called ‘Fragment-Screen’, involving six leading research centres across Europe together with seven industrial partners including IBM and Astex Pharmaceuticals. Working together we will make advances in the application of X-ray crystallography, cryo-EM and NMR for fragment screening as well as applying advanced computational approaches to hit identification and development. The role therefore offers an excellent opportunity to be part of an international, interdisciplinary research team.
Details on the overall project are available here: https://instruct-eric.org/news/fragment-screen-a-new-european-project-coordinated-by-instruct-eric/
The Versatile Macromolecular Crystallography in-situ (VMXi) beamline at Diamond is dedicated to room temperature data collection from macromolecular crystals. It is an entirely automated facility for characterisation of, and data collection directly from, crystallisation experiments in situ. Working with the beamline team you will conduct experiments to determine and implement the most effective pipelines to carry out fragment screens at room temperature. You will investigate the differences between fragment binding under the usual cryogenic conditions and at room temperature. This work will be within an overall part of the project concerned with X-ray diffraction including other researchers at Diamond and the ESRF, France.
The PDRA will be responsible for:
• Carrying out experiments to fulfil the aims of the research proposal. This may vary from protein crystallisation, carrying out fragment campaigns and X-ray crystallographic data analysis to pipeline optimisation.
• Managing the day-to-day running of a research project.
• Identifying research objectives.
• Attending scientific meetings including consortium meetings and presenting your research.
• Leading in the analysis and authoring of scientific results in international peer-reviewed journals.
This role is an 18-month fix term contract from appointment.
You should hold a degree in science, with a PhD relevant to the research area.
You should demonstrate knowledge or experience of:
• Macromolecular crystallography
• Protein crystallisation
• Crystallographic data processing software
• Fragment screening / drug design methods (desirable)
• Synchrotron radiation-based research (desirable)
You will demonstrate good interpersonal, communication and presentational skills, with the ability to interact effectively with staff and facility users/collaborators at all levels.
Diamond offers an exceptional benefits package to support staff in achieving a positive work/life balance. This includes 25 days annual leave plus 13 days of statutory and company holidays and 2 annual volunteering days, along with flexible working hours and an excellent pension scheme. Staff also have access to a range of amenities on site including a nursery, cafes, a restaurant and sports and leisure facilities. A relocation allowance may also be available where applicable.
Please use the online application process to apply and tell us why you believe you are suitable for this role.
The initial closing date for applications is 19th March 2023, however applications will be reviewed and interviewed on an ongoing basis until this vacancy is filled.