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Senior Research Assistant

University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, Texas
Closing date
Apr 13, 2022

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Health Sciences
Organization Type
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Key Functions
  1. Planning and Execution of Experiments. The employee will conduct and carry out research experiments and is required to discuss goals of projects with supervisors. Receives detailed verbal and/or written instructions on how to conduct an experiment in order to achieve the goals of the project. Verbally asks questions of supervisor and/or other laboratory personnel to clarify and obtain further information needed to prepare for and properly execute experiments. Clear and concise verbal communication is important. The employee must possess good reading (English) and writing skills; some editing experience in scientific writing is desirable. Receives verbal and/or written instructions on the operation and maintenance of all laboratory equipment. Position will require periodic communications with vendors and other laboratory personnel to obtain technical information by talking on the telephone. Develops a step-by-step written procedure outlining the specific actions required to conduct the experiment before proceeding. The successful candidate will exercise initiative and inventiveness in planning, executing and interpreting data obtained from experiments. Must be able to communicate results to principal investigators (PIs) and collaborators. Must have a well-developed esprit de corps and willingness to cooperate with all principals. Must have the ability to resolve, in consultation with PIs, various technical problems as they emerge that are related to experimental design and technique. The position will require detailed, legible handwritten records of all experiments performed.
  1. Animal techniques: Candidate should be well-trained on animal biology and strong animal modeling background (GEMMs) is highly preferred. Must be responsible for animal care, organization of the colonies, xenograft and orthotopic tumor models, manipulation of the mice including tail vein/retro-orbital/intraperitoneal/subcutaneous injections, gavage treatments, tail vein bleeds, euthanasia and necropsy. Candidate must be skilled on animal breeding, weaning, genotyping, tissue harvesting, as well as downstream processing and analysis.
  1. Specific tasks : Must be able to generate and analyze data for presentations and publications. Sound working knowledge and trouble shooting skills in some of the following techniques: ELISA assays, western blot analysis, immunoprecipitation, gene knockdown/knockout, transfection/transduction of mammalian /bacterial cells, proliferation/apoptosis study, gene expression library construction, RT-PCR, immunostaining of tissue sections, gel electrophoresis of proteins and nucleic acids, mammalian cell culture, T-cell isolation and culture, cryopreservation of cells, preparation of DNA, RNA, and protein from cells, blood, tissues, and FFPE slides for next-generation sequencing , microarray, methylation array, and protein array analyses. Data analyses from DNA/RNA/protein arrays and next-generation sequencing; Animal experiments including testing the efficacy and mechanisms of action of specific anti-cancer agents both in vivo and ex vivo according to IRB-approved animal protocols;
  1. Ordering supplies and maintenance of equipment . Periodically reviews and place orders for laboratory supplies including community reagents and chemicals. Assist in assembly, operation, and maintenance of laboratory.
  1. Tissue culture and handling of hazardous biological materials: Maintains and establishes tissue culture cell lines which requires good sterile techniques and the ability to observe and identify cell changes under the microscope, determine cell counts on the hemocytometer or coulter counter, perform colony counts and determine cell viability. Prepares sterile medias and solutions. Prepares cells for cryogenic storage and re-establishment by the use of small vials, dry ice and liquid nitrogen. The employee must be good at sterile technique, the manipulation of viable cells and the re-feeding and characterization of cultures. Precaution against blood-borne pathogens must be taken whenever human-derived cells are used in accordance with the institutional Universal Precautions Plan. Must demonstrate and practice laboratory safety precautions. Must manually handle, store and dispose of radioactive isotopes, chemically hazardous materials, and biohazardous materials in procedures specified to meet MDACC safety guidelines. Accurately records use and disposal of all radioactive materials. The position requires the maintenance and analysis of various viable (human and mouse) cell lines. Tests may periodically be performed for mycoplasma contamination. Requires use of single and multichannel pipettors. Fine finger dexterity will be required to manipulate small tissue culture vials.
  1. Guide, teach, supervise, and assist students, collaborators, and laboratory members to accomplish research.
  1. Other duties as assigned.

  1. The above functions require a strong command of the English language, including spelling, writing, and the ability to clearly and accurately communicate verbally in English both face-to-face and over the phone.

Bachelor's degree in one of the natural sciences or related field. Three years of experience in scientific or experimental research work. With preferred degree, one year of required experience It is the policy of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to provide equal employment opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, age, national origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or any other basis protected by institutional policy or by federal, state or local laws unless such distinction is required by law.
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