The Noireaux lab provides a highly energetic and multidisciplinary research group working at the edge of cell-free TXTL systems for synthetic biology. We are looking for people from a wide array of backgrounds (chemical engineering, bioengineering, molecular biology, genetics, systems biology) who are driven to creatively tackle challenging problems in the rapidly growing research area of cell-free systems.
The Noireaux lab is seeking a Researcher 6 to lead a project on cell-free synthetic biology. This work is part of an NSF grant. Specifically, we are using a versatile and powerful cell-free TXTL platform to engineer biological systems across scales: gene circuits, biosynthesis pathways and synthetic cells. The candidate will be responsible for molecular biology (cloning), cell-free expression and soft matter physics.
Project Background: cell-free systems have recently emerged as powerful platforms to construct biological systems in vitro. Cell-free systems are now used to prototype gene circuits, to recapitulate the complete synthesis of phages, for biosynthesis and for the construction of synthetic cell systems. Cell-free synthetic biology is rapidly expanding its scope to many other applications such as biotechnology and medicine. This position will be involved in the development of new cell-free systems for in vitro metabolic engineering and for the bottom-up synthesis of minimal cells. The cell-free TXTL system, encapsulated into liposomes, is used to execute gene circuits encoding for biological functions in isolation. Many advances have been made in this direction. Yet, a lot has to be discovered on how to integrate biological parts to synthesize truly functional cell-sized compartment program with synthetic gene circuits. In this project, we aim to use cell-free TXTL systems to make critical steps in the assembly of robust and functional minimal cells, which includes metabolic pathways that sustain biosynthesis. Such research area improves our understanding of core biology and fosters the development of new technologies.
Job duties will include the following:
45% Experimental Research • Develop research plans and solving highly complex methodology, protocol, procedural and research problems through the original design of protocols, policies and procedures. • Research advanced concepts and developing original solutions in the absence of clear standards. • Conduct a large research project and coordinate the analysis, evaluation and reporting on phases of the cell-free TXTL systems for synthetic biology project. • Acquire experimental data on cell-free expression experiments and synthetic cell experiments • Study the specific aims of the proposal and become familiar with the study measurements and outcomes/endpoints. • Act as project leader and interact/coordinate with similar research projects.
30% Synthetic Biology and Biophysics Data Analysis • Analysis and interpretation of cell-free reaction data and synthetic cell data (fluorescence microscopy, fluorometry) • Interpret complex data and advise principal investigators and others within work unit, department, outside investigators within and outside the University and/or industries on synthetic biology and biophysics research techniques, procedures and experimental results.
15% Communicating Research Results • Present results in group meetings and at conferences • Attending collaboration meetings, seminars and conferences • Communicating research to the broader community. Serve as the expert resource to lab members, outside collaborators, and the scientific community. • Prepare and interpret results for publications and presentations. • Writing papers and submitting them for publication in scientific journals • Presenting results at conferences (both domestic and international)
5% Lab Management • Instruct and supervise new personnel in various lab technologies and techniques, appraising their outcomes, evaluating their performance. • Supervise the build-out of new lab space interacting with various parties as needed.
5% Communicating with Collaborators · Direct and supervise undergraduate and graduate students · Interpret complex data and advise principal investigator on research techniques, procedures and results
Other duties of a similar scope as assigned.
Required Qualifications Ph.D. in physics chemical engineering, bioengineering, molecular biology, genetics, systems biology. Substantial research and publication record. Three years of experience doing biophysics experiments on cell-free expression and synthetic cell systems. Demonstrated experience with cell-free expression, laboratory automation (liquid handler), microscopy, fluorometry and quantitative analysis of data.
Preferred Qualifications Experience in synthetic biology, molecular biology, DNA assembly, biochemistry, soft matter.
Internal Number: 334881
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