Senior Research Associate

Portland, Oregon
Salary commensurate with qualifications and experience
January 16 2019
Life Sciences, Genetics
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type
Job Type

Postdoctoral or staff position available immediately in the Merritt Lab for genetic studies of human oral streptococci.

S. mutans is one of the primary species in the oral flora responsible for triggering caries-related dysbiosis, which ultimately results in tooth decay if left untreated. Our laboratory studies S. mutans genetics as a model system to better understand gene regulatory mechanisms important for triggering dysbiosis among the human flora as well as novel approaches to selectively inhibit particular species of bacteria living in mixed communities. A second research emphasis in the lab uses mixed species polymicrobial infections with Anginosus Group streptococci to understand the mechanisms of polymicrobial synergy in dysbiotic diseases of the human mucosae. Current projects include: 1) characterize pleiotropic, post-transcriptional gene regulatory mechanisms, especially those targeting mRNA stability or translation, and 2) determine the mechanistic basis for polymicrobial synergy and immunopathology in mixed species infection models.

Candidates should be highly self-motivated and possess a strong background in microbial genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, immunology, or a related field.

Typical duties of this position include:

Genetic mutation construction, gene expression analysis, protein expression/purification, EMSA, Co-IP, northern blotting, western blotting, FACS analysis, and fluorescence microscopy.

Position Conditions/Qualifications:


  • Doctoral degree in a related field of science
  • Evidence of extensive experience with current genetic, molecular biology, and/or biochemistry techniques
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team


  • Microbial ecology and/or bacteriology experience
  • Experience working with RNA
  • Protein purification
  • Strong background in gene regulation and/or post-transcriptional regulation
  • Experience handling mice
  • Ability to contribute to the writing of scientific papers and/or grants

Apply online at


For additional details or further inquiry, please contact:

Justin Merritt, Ph.D.


Oregon Health and Science University

3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd. MRB424

Portland, OR 97239

P (503) 428-2664