Research Support Assistant - PNAC - Dr Jason Chin - LMB 1380

Updated: about 2 months ago
Location: Cambridge, ENGLAND
Deadline: 18 Oct 2020

View Vacancy -- Research Support Assistant - PNAC - Dr Jason Chin - LMB 1380
Open Date
28/09/2020, 08:00
Close Date
18/10/2020, 23:55

MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology

The MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB) is one of the birthplaces of modern molecular biology and has played an important role in the development of many new techniques, most notably protein crystallography, cryo-electron microscopy, DNA sequencing and monoclonal antibodies.  The LMB has a clear goal of understanding biological processes at the molecular level, with the ultimate aim of using this knowledge to tackle specific problems in human health and disease.  We aim to tackle difficult, long-term problems, which often require investment over many years.

There are four scientific Divisions - Structural Studies, Protein and Nucleic Acid Chemistry, Cell Biology and Neurobiology.  However, scientific collaboration between the different Divisions is extensive.  Scientists are well supported by excellent scientific facilities and by the LMB Operations Group which maintains the core infrastructure and services of the institute.

The LMB provides an unsurpassed environment for both new and established researchers.  Scientists are drawn to the LMB from all over the world, thus creating a lively and international community for the exchange of ideas and technical innovation.

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


£25,198 - £26,901 per annum

Fixed Term


Full Time

Fixed term until 30 June 2021

Overall purpose:

To work within the group of Dr Jason Chin at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB), providing research support for a programme investigating systematic genetic code reprogramming.

Main duties:

  • To undertake basic research by preparing, setting up, conducting and recording the outcome of experiments, analysing and interpreting results as appropriate
  • To perform a range of experiments that may include some but not necessarily all of:
  • Development of machine learning classifier on tRNA/aaRS database to identify new orthogonal pairs
  • To generate computational pipelines for the lab.
  • To present information on research progress and outcomes as appropriate
  • To conduct literature and database searches
  • To contribute to the production of research reports and publications
  • To ensure and maintain an efficient and tidy Laboratory

Key Responsibilities:

To plan and manage your experimental work within the project along with your supervisor and other members of the project team.

To ensure the research is carried in accordance with good practice and in compliance with local polices and legal requirements.

To contribute to the smooth running of the research group, including the effective use of resources, training of others and taking responsibility for use of communal facilities.

Working relationships:

You will report to Dr Jason Chin. You will interact and collaborate with Postdoctoral Scientists, Research Support Staff and Students, not only in your Group, but also across the LMB and with external Groups as necessary.

Additional information:

The above lists are not exhaustive and you are required to undertake such duties as may reasonably be requested within the scope of the post. All employees are required to act professionally, co-operatively and flexibly in line with the requirements of the post and the MRC.

Education / qualifications / training required:

Essential: Bachelors degree or equivalent in a relevant biological subject

Desirable: Relevant Masters or equivalent relevant laboratory experience

Previous work experience required:


  • Basic bench work skills
  • Experience or theoretical knowledge of basic molecular biology skills/techniques (e.g. PCR, gene cloning)
  • Proficiency in scientific programming languages


  • Previous experience in the field of computational approaches related to expanding the genetic code
  • Experimental techniques relevant to the role, which could include (though not limited to):

           - Protein analysis: protein production and purification (affinity chromatography), gel electrophoresis, western blot.

           - Cell culture

           - In vitro fluorescence based assay

Knowledge and Experience :

Creativity and initiative


  • Ability to plan and carry out experiments, collate and analyse data
  • Understanding of lab health and safety

Desirable: Practical experience of running and maintaining scientific equipment

Independent working

Essential: Proven skills in working independently and as part of a team with minimal supervision; good judgment in assessing when to ask for support.

Desirable: Can independently advance existing techniques and implement new methods

Verbal and written communication skills

Essential: Excellent written and verbal communication skills.


  • Experience of giving presentations
  • Has made contributions to scientific papers.

Personal skills / behaviours / qualities:


  • Reliability and enthusiasm
  • Strong organisational skills
  • Passion for science and a desire to continue to develop skills and knowledge.

As this job does not fulfil the UK Government minimum salary criterion for obtaining sponsored migrant worker status we will be unable to apply for sponsorship for anyone not eligible to work in the UK. At interview, all shortlisted candidates are required to bring with them identification documents and original documents that prove they hold or can obtain the right to work in the UK.  You can check your eligibility here:
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.

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