Postdoctoral Associate

The Duke Human Vaccine Institute (DHVI)
Durham, NC
commensurate with experience
April 26 2019
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

The Duke Human Vaccine Institute (DHVI), an international leader in the fight against major infectious diseases, is currently recruiting for Postdoctoral Associates to join our research team.  The Duke Human Vaccine Institute is an interdisciplinary, interdepartmental institute dedicated to the study of basic and translational science required to understand host-pathogen interactions that can be translated to vaccines against human diseases.  We are a team of highly interactive investigators that have expertise in immunology, molecular biology, virology, microbiology, computational biology, and vaccine science and are seeking a highly motivated recent PhD graduate who is interested in Immunobiology or related scientific field to play an integral role in the following project under the direction of Dr. Munir Alam.

A HIV-1 Envelope (Env) vaccine that elicits broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs) has remained elusive, in part due to the limited understanding of the mechanisms of bnAb induction during natural infection. Recent advances in Env protein designs have provided several key potential immunogens, however, how such antigens are sensed by BCRs on B cells that participates in anti-HIV-1 immune responses that generate bnAbs is not well understood. We are studying how HIV-1 Env proteins of varying affinities are sensed by B cells and initiate early signaling events for activation of B cells with HIV-1 bnAbs’ specificities that are key vaccine targets. Using high-resolution microscopy and biophysical assays, and relevant B cell lines and B cells from knock-in mice expressing B cell antigen receptors (BCR) of HIV bnAbs and germline precursors,  we aim to define the key properties of BCR-antigen interactions and early nanoscale B cell membrane reorganization events that promote co-stimulation and optimal B cell activation. This research project is a collaboration with researchers at Duke Human Vaccine Institute, The San Diego Biomedical Research Institute and the University of Freiburg, Germany.

The DHVI has a dynamic mentoring program, and our postdoctoral associates work in concert with Duke faculty and staff in an invigorating research training environment. One of our primary scientific missions is to support and train early stage investigators to be the next generation of scientific leaders equipped to identify and implement solutions for improving human health worldwide.

DHVI functions as a vaccine development biotechnology enterprise, embedded within a top university.  As a trainee within our mentoring program, you will interact with highly innovative and collaborative investigators and have the opportunity to master state of the art technologies. We are committed to providing an outstanding training environment and research experiences that will enhance your career and provide you an avenue to incorporate your education, expertise, initiative and dedication to the success of the studies.  This is an opportunity to become part of a winning team that is working to discover novel ways to prevent infectious diseases.

The successful candidate will have a PhD or MD degree in a biological science or related field with immunobiology research experience.  Must also be able to manage multiple and changing priorities in an interactive team environment with strong detail orientation and communication skills.

To be considered for the position, candidates must apply to requisition number 401573772 on the Duke postdoctoral and senior researcher employment site - (  The application materials should include a CV and cover letter with a half page summary explaining your interest in our research as well as how it fits within your overall career objectives.  You will be contacted if we are interested in exploring your credentials in more detail.

Duke University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employee opportunity without regard to an individual’s age, color, disability, genetic information, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

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