Senior Scientist - Reck-Peterson Lab

San Diego, California
March 22 2019
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Senior Scientist - Reck-Peterson Lab

We currently have an opening for a Senior Scientist to join the laboratory of Dr. Samara Reck-Peterson at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Reck-Peterson’s laboratory studies the mechanisms of microtubule-based transport within cells. The microtubule cytoskeleton and associated transport machinery is responsible for organizing intracellular contents spatially and temporally. The Reck-Peterson lab strives to understand how this system works at molecular, cellular, and organismal scales, and to understand why defects in transport cause neurological disease. They use a combination of approaches including protein biochemistry and in vitro reconstitution, single-molecule biophysics, proteomics, fungal genetics, mammalian cell culture including of iPSCs, and state-of-the-art live-cell imaging, including lattice-light-sheet microscopy. Through collaborations they have access to cryo-electron microscopy and cryo-electron tomography to pursue structural studies of the transport machinery.

This role will be responsible for contributing broadly to the Reck-Peterson lab research program, and will be the highest ranking non-Investigator role within the lab.  Ideal candidates will be confident and comfortable running a full lab during the PI’s travel or absence, and have a strong desire to serve as a trusted resource for the other staff within the lab.

We are open to providing relocation to candidates outside of the San Diego, CA area.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Research:  80%. 

Support the collaborative research environment and provide guidance on technical and operational aspects of research.  Develop and implement research projects, as well as identify methodological problems in research protocols and develop solutions to those problems. Review research activities to determine where new information, methods, or collaborations could positively impact projects. Routinely develops innovative techniques and systems required to meet research goals, and may coordinate and train lab members on specialized research methods such as lattice-light-sheet microscopy, in vitro reconstitution, and gene-editing cell lines. Use Software applications to assemble, format and/or perform statistical analyses of data. 


Lab Operations:   20%. 

Mentor graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, Research Associates, and staff.  Train others in the use of specialized equipment as necessary – such as plate readers, TIRF microscopes, and spinning disk confocal microscopes.  Read and review scientific literature.  Write and edit manuscripts, fellowship applications, and shared equipment grants.

Along with other duties as assigned by the Principal Investigator, the candidate will serve as the senior member of the lab, acting as a resource for both students and staff for a variety of issues.


Preferred Qualifications:

Expertise in:

  • Live-cell microscopy and image analysis.
  • Total internal reflection microscopy and analysis of single-molecule images.
  • Biochemical purification, including use of FPLCs and SEC-MALS.
  • Mammalian and insect cell culture and transfections.
  • CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing.
  • Cell biology of the cytoskeleton and intracellular trafficking.
  • Molecular biology.


Education and Experience:

  • PhD in the biological, biomedical, biochemical or biophysical sciences.
  • More than five years of research experience after earning a PhD.
  • A broad range of scientific experience and a strong publication record.
  • A strong desire to mentor and teach trainees of all levels.
  • Ability to work independently.
  • Strong verbal and oral communication skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal interaction skills.


HHMI is an equal opportunity employer.

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