Biologist Postdoctoral Fellow

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

United States

August 28, 2021


Lawrence Berkeley National Lab's (LBNL), Environmental Genomics and Systems Biology (EGSB) Division has an opening for a Biologist Postdoctoral Fellow.

The Postdoc will work as part of a team to develop and apply experimental methods to isolate novel phages, integrate recent advances in genome-wide screening technologies to study host-phage interaction determinants, leverage mining of viral metagenomic and metatranscriptomic datasets to ecologically contextualize new isolates, and attempt to engineer host determining factors in the novel phages. Success of this project will lay the foundation towards establishing innovative methods to isolate, characterize and engineer atypical phages and can be focused to support the agricultural, environmental and health strategies of Berkeley Lab. The work will be conducted in collaboration with scientists from the EGSB Division and Joint Genome Institute (JGI).

What You Will Do:

  • Develop a standardized workflow to enrich and isolate atypical phages for non-model bacteria.
  • Establish characterization methods to study phage interaction with diverse bacteria and analyze metagenomic and metatranscriptomic data for genomic signatures.
  • Develop and perform high-throughput genetics and physiological screening to determine gene function.
  • Working with the team to identify new mechanisms of host-phage specificity, infection, defense, and reproduction from this high throughput data.
  • Use this information to build chimeric phages and engineer phages with novel traits.
  • ​​Additional Responsibilities as needed:

  • Prepare research results for publication and for presentations at scientific and internal meetings.
  • Maintain an accurate and detailed scientific logbook of all experiments performed. Archive generated material (plasmids / strains / phages). Ensure that others could duplicate results.
  • What is Required:

  • PhD in microbiology, virology, biochemical engineering, synthetic biology, genomics, or molecular biology.
  • Experience with phage isolation, phage sample handling, characterization, and phage engineering.
  • Experience in high-throughput synthetic biology.
  • Experience in microbial physiology and genetics.
  • Knowledge of next generation sequencing technologies.
  • Outstanding writing and oral communication skills, maintain appropriate records and manage data.
  • Independent but collaborative mindset with excitement in solving problems and exploring/characterizing novel micro-organisms.
  • Desired Qualifications:

  • Experience in molecular biology (cloning).
  • Comfortable to write scripts in at least one programming language (bash, perl, python, etc.).
  • Experience in handling and analysis of large datasets.
  • Experience with bioinformatic analysis of novel phage genomes.
  • Notes:

  • This is a full-time1 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 3 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.
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values at Berkeley Lab. Our excellence can only be fully realized by faculty, students, and staff who share our commitment to these values. Successful candidates for our faculty positions will demonstrate evidence of a commitment to advancing equity and inclusion.
  • Work will be primarily performed at: West Berkeley Biocenter (Potter St.) — Bldg. 977, 717 Potter St., Berkeley, CA.
  • Learn about us!

    Environmental Genomics and Systems Biology

    Mission: Linking genome biology to ecosystem dynamics.

    Vision: Sustainable solutions to energy and environmental challenges developed through mechanistic understanding of ecosystem dynamics.

    Approach: We develop systems-level models using integrated molecular observation and controlled manipulation of model organisms and defined biomes to design and test interventions that promote beneficial outcomes.

    Berkeley Lab

    Berkeley Lab (LBNL) addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.

    Working at Berkeley Lab has many rewards including a competitive compensation program, excellent health and welfare programs, a retirement program that is second to none, and outstanding development opportunities. To view information about the many rewards that are offered at Berkeley Lab- Click Here.

    Equal Employment Opportunity: Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4. Click here to view the poster and supplement: "Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law."

    Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory encourages applications from women, minorities, veterans, and other underrepresented groups presently considering scientific research careers.