Lawrence Berkeley National Lab’s (LBNL) Environmental Genomics & Systems Biology Division has an opening for a Postdoctoral Fellow to join the Kerfeld group in the study of Bacterial Microcompartments (BMCs).
In this exciting role, you will work on a project focused on characterizing and disrupting BMC shell permeability to provide a novel strategy for the design of antimicrobials. BMCs are organelles composed entirely of protein that enable bacteria to use diverse substrates in nutritionally poor environments, for example, this contributes to the fitness of pathogens in host tissues. They are composed of a selectively permeable protein shell that encapsulates catabolic enzymes. The shell is the defining feature of all types of bacterial microcompartments, providing the diffusion barrier that typically enables concentration of substrates in the vicinity of the encapsulated enzymes, sequesters toxic intermediates or protects oxygen sensitive enzymes from the bulk cytosol. How these shells, composed of multiple types of paralogs, self-assemble and the structural basis of the selective permeability of a protein shell are fundamental biological questions with important practical implications.
You will carry out creative research with tenacity and of the highest quality standards. This includes experimental design, troubleshooting, interpretation of data, and the ability to situate results in the context of disarming pathogens by disabling BMC-based metabolism. Research will involve protein/enzyme biochemistry, specifically functional characterization of BMC shell permeability, with the long-term objective of using the findings in the development of therapeutics. Closely related projects are at various experimental stages. You will collaborate with other group members on a range of fundamental and applied studies of BMCs.
What You Will Do:
- Carry out creative research with tenacity and of the highest quality standards. This includes experimental design, troubleshooting, interpretation of data, and the ability to situate results in the context of disarming pathogens by disabling BMC-based metabolism.
- Use and develop new strategies to directly measure shell permeability.
- Prepare manuscripts for publication and assist with the development of funding proposals and patents.
- Overexpression and purification and characterization of proteins/enzymes.
- Genetic manipulation of microorganisms.
- Conduct and perform collaborative research and effectively interact with a broad range of colleagues.
- Organize and present reports to collaborators and sponsors.
- Participate in group meetings and seminars.
- Work with other members of the group and collaborators under the supervision of senior members of the group and the P.I.
- Analyze and interpret the results and write papers describing the results.
- Maintain an accurate and detailed scientific logbook of all experiments performed; ensure that others could duplicate results.
What is Required:
- Ph.D. degree in biochemistry, molecular biology, biophysics, or a related field.
- Experience in one or more of the following: synthetic biology or bioengineering, protein design, high-throughput approaches to cloning and imaging, enzymology, or biophysical characterization of macromolecular complexes.
- Experience in gene cloning, protein expression, purification, and characterization.
- Ability to interact collaboratively among a variety of disciplines.
- Strong background in molecular biology and/or biochemistry.
- Ability to work independently with understanding of the theoretical basis of the methods used.
- Knowledge of bioinformatic approaches that complement the bench work.
- Skill in designing experiments and their controls and ability to coach junior members of the group in developing their experimental plans.
- Ability to multitask.
- This is a full-time 1 year postdoctoral appointment with the possibility of renewal based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs. You must have less than 4 years of paid postdoctoral experience. Salary for Postdoctoral positions depends on years of experience post-degree.
- This position is represented by a union for collective bargaining purposes.
- Salary will be predetermined based on postdoctoral step rates.
- This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.
- Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.
Based on University of California Policy – SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program and U.S Federal Government requirements, Berkeley Lab requires that all members of our community obtain the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they are eligible. As a condition of employment at Berkeley Lab, all Covered Individuals must Participate in the COVID-19 Vaccination Program by providing proof of Full Vaccination or submitting a request for Exception or Deferral. Visit covid.lbl.gov for more information.
Berkeley Lab is committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accountability (IDEA) and strives to continue building community with these shared values and commitments. Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer. We heartily welcome applications from women, minorities, veterans, and all who would contribute to the Lab’s mission of leading scientific discovery, inclusion, and professionalism. In support of our diverse global community, all qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status.
Equal Opportunity and IDEA Information Links: