Research Assistant LMS 1388

Updated: about 1 month ago
Location: London, ENGLAND
Deadline: 26 Oct 2020

View Vacancy -- Research Assistant LMS 1388
Open Date
02/10/2020, 13:30
Close Date
26/10/2020, 23:55

MRC London Institute of Medical Science

The LMS is an Institute funded by the MRC and is a Division of the Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College. Based on the Hammersmith Hospital Campus in West London (W12), the LMS has first class facilities and provides investigators from clinical and basic science backgrounds with the opportunity to pursue innovative, multidisciplinary research within the established clinical base of Imperial College. For more information, visit .
UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, more information can be found at

MRC - 5


£30,227 - £31,930 incl.

Fixed Term


Full Time

15 months with possibility of extension.

Overall purpose:

The LMS Genomics Lab carries out genomics research with investigators at the LMS and Imperial College, using next generation sequencing (Illumina Nextseq500, HiSeq2500 and MiSeq platforms), single-cell profiling (Chromium 10X Genomics), Nanopore sequencing (MinION) and automated sample preparation. The post holder will provide technical support and genomics services to a large user community for a wide range of research projects using mostly sequencing technologies.


Focus of the post:

  • Deliver a fast, efficient, high quality, cost-effective and tailor-made Illumina NGS service to the LMS research community. This includes experimental design advice, technical support, training and services in RNA and DNA sample QC, library preparation, operating Illumina sequencers, data QC and data management
  • Maintain the Facility at the cutting edge of technology by anticipating and adapting to the fast moving field of genomics research and by working collaboratively with CSC research groups to help with the development and optimisation of new technologies e.g. single-cell analysis, spatial transcriptomics, Nanopore sequencing
  • The post requires full time work on site with no opportunity to work from home.


Working relationships:

The postholder will report directly to the Genomics Lab Facility Head and work closely with the other member of the facility. He/She will interact with users on a daily basis and will provide technical support and training in a number of protocols and equipment. This can involve dealing with complex and/or sensitive issues and requires a high level of technical experience, excellent communication skills, tact and diplomacy.


Main duties / key responsibilities:

The post holder will be responsible for performing laboratory experiments involving primarily high throughput sequencing on the Illumina platforms and single cell work on the 10X Chromium, for a variety of different projects. Duties will include:


  • RNA and DNA sample preparation and QC assessment (Bioanalyser- Tapestation)
  • Managing effectively sample submissions and liaising with users
  • RNA/DNA library preparation and QC for a wide range of applications including ChIP-seq, RNA-seq, whole genome resequencing, amplicon-seq, single cell RNA-seq e.g 10X Genomics platform
  • Setting up sequencing runs on the Illumina Miseq/Nextseq/Hiseq, monitoring runs and assessing data quality.
  • Maintaining and troubleshooting the equipment and liaising with Illumina technical support
  • Managing Illumina data storage on the machines and transferring files onto local storage systems; liaising with users for handing over run data.
  • Processing cells and nuclei on the 10X Chromium system and work closely and flexibly with user to process samples and develop protocols e.g. single cell ATAC-seq, Yeast single cell analysis.
  • Liaising with the LMS Bioinformatics Core for downstream data processing and management
  • Managing the shRNA library service and picking and preparing bacterial shRNA clones for researchers on demand
  • Communicating effectively with users and providing technical support and training on specific equipment e.g. Bioanalyser, Single-cell C1 machine, Biomark, qPCR QuantStudio machines, Covaris shearing
  • Continuously improve and develop library preparation protocols (e.g. for single-cell analysis), custom sequencing protocols and automation/miniaturisation on a Mosquito HV
  • Continue to develop expertise in MinION/Flongle nanopore applications as the technology matures and develop internal collaborative projects to promote its use
  • Keep abreast of the latest NGS technologies and work towards expanding the services to serve the LMS research community evolving needs

Education / Qualifications / Training (will be assessed from application form and at interview):


  • MSc or BSc in Genetics, Molecular Biology or Biological Sciences.
  • Excellent training in molecular biology working with RNA and DNA
  • Excellent training in NGS sequencing including Illumina platforms



  • Understanding of basics Bioinformatics concepts applied to genomics data analysis
  • Professional Registration e.g. RSciTech or RSci with a relevant scientific body e.g. Royal Society of Biology


Previous work experience (will be assessed from application form and at interview):



  • At least 3 years experimental/bench work experience using molecular biology and sequencing techniques; proven experience in working with RNA and DNA
  • At least 2 years proven laboratory experience in operating Illumina sequencers and preparing RNA and DNA libraries for NGS
  • Previous practical experience with next-generation sequencing applications including RNA-seq and ChIP-seq and experience of experimental design
  • Previous experience in customer liaison and service delivery
  • Proven experience in troubleshooting complex problems
  • Can demonstrate outstanding organisational skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and against tight deadlines
  • Experience of working in a research support environment



  • Proven lab experience in 10X Chromium single cell analysis technology and application
  • Laboratory experience with bacterial cell culture
  • Presenting to a scientific and technical audience


Knowledge and experience (will be assessed from application form and at interview):



  • Excellent knowledge of genomics technologies including NGS and single cell applications
  • Good knowledge of applications of NGS, e.g. Chip_seq, RNA-Seq, Exome-seq, Amplicon-seq and targeted resequencing, single cell analysis
  • Excellent understanding and practical experience of molecular biology especially handling of RNA and DNA
  • Experience of experimental design and provision of technical advice to scientists
  • Experience of training people and of effective interaction with scientists at all levels of seniority
  • Proven ability to keep abreast of the latest genomics technologies and applications in research
  • Excellent understanding of Laboratory Health and Safety requirements



  • Ability to work on different projects with conflicting deadlines
  • Familiarity with basic concepts of statistics and bioinformatics
  • Keen interest in keeping up to date with latest advances in the field of genomics


Personal skills/behaviours/qualities (will be assessed at interview):



  • Enthusiastic person with ‘can-do’ attitude and strong commitment and motivation to the job and to the success of the Facility and the Institute
  • Strong attention to details and ability to handle precious samples and follow protocols accurately
  • Confident communicator with experience in dealing with sensitive issues
  • Ability to deliver top quality service/support under high pressure and with limited resources/staffing
  • Strong will and ability to learn new techniques and skills in a proactive manner
  • Collaborative attitude : ability and will to proactively work collaboratively with LMS researchers e.g. proactively engage with researchers to develop and optimise new protocols; attend and present at technical seminars
  • Experience of proactively seeking innovative solutions to technical problems


  • Flexibility in working hours to allow for collaborative work with other LMS researchers and to provide the best service/support within the constraints of a small team
  • Strong interest and initiative in researching and learning about emerging genomics technologies, through publications, seminars, conferences and transferring knowledge into facility work
  • Ability and willingness to train others and engage in sharing of knowledge




  • Proactively seek innovative solutions to technical problems
  • Willingness to work both independently and as a team on multiple projects
  • Willingness to work in a diverse, multi-cultural environment


Upload your CV, names and contacts of two scientific references along with a covering letter stating why you are applying for this role (providing evidence against the requirements of the job as per the job description and person specification).

Closing date: 26/10/2020

Interviews will be scheduled week starting 02/11/2020.

Role to begin 01/12/2020


The MRC is a great place to work and progress your career, be it in scientific research or the support functions.The MRC is a unique working environment where our researchers are rewarded by world class innovation and collaboration opportunities that the MRC name brings. The MRC is an excellent place to develop yourself further and a range of training & development opportunities will be available to you, including professional registration with the Science Council.
Choosing to come to work at the MRC (part of UKRI) means that you will have access to a whole host of benefits from a defined benefit pension scheme and excellent holiday entitlement to access to employee shopping/travel discounts and salary sacrifice cycle to work scheme, as well as the chance to put the MRC and UKRI on your CV in the future.
Our success is dependent upon our ability to embrace diversity and draw on the skills, understanding and experience of all our people. We welcome applications from all sections of the community irrespective of gender, race, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability or age. As "Disability Confident" employers, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.
UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.
We will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

View or Apply

Similar Positions