Research Fellow in Synthetic Biology

Macquarie University


October 2, 2022



• Salary Package: From $76,173- $102,570 (Level A) p.a. plus 17% employer's superannuation and annual leave loading • Appointment Type: Full-time, 2 years fixed term • Convenient Macquarie University (North Ryde) location


The School of Natural Sciences is currently seeking a suitably qualified Postdoctoral Research Fellow join a multi-disciplinary team working on yeast metabolic engineering and biosensor development. This multifaceted Australian Research Grant (ARC) funded project aims to establish universal methods for creating small-molecule biosensors, and apply them to the directed evolution of small-molecule over-production phenotypes in the model organism Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The primary role of the position is to use synthetic biology techniques and principles to engineer novel systems for biosensing and directed evolution.

The successful applicant will work with Professor Ian Paulsen and Dr Tom Williams, to:

  • Engineer novel yeast protein-display technology

  • Develop novel selective pressures for Adaptive Laboratory Evolution (ALE) experiments

  • Generate novel forms of genetic diversity for screening using biosensors and (ALE)

  • Co-supervise HDR students on the above projects

  • Apply for competitive research funding

  • About You

    You will have completed a PhD in Synthetic Biology or a closely related discipline. You will enjoy bringing impactful research outcomes and working effectively as part of a multi-disciplinary research team. Your collaborative approach to working with others will ensure you perform effectively within a multi-disciplinary environment. If you are an excellent communicator with a proactive nature and are flexible and resilient in your approach, then this is a role you will thrive in and a School and research team you will enjoy working with.

    About Us

    The School of Natural Sciences at Macquarie University was established on 1 January 2022 through the amalgamation of the Departments of Biological Sciences, Molecular Sciences, and Earth and Environmental Sciences. The School is the largest in the Faculty of Science and Engineering and is a vibrant community of educators, researchers and students working across a wide range of biological, biomolecular, biomedical, chemical, environmental and geoscience disciplines.

    The Faculty of Science and Engineering is a young and dynamic faculty driven by the spirit of discovery. Here we nurture the next generation of science and technology innovators. From a handful of students on the University's first day, the Faculty now serves nearly 6000 students across all our programs. Our research and teaching addresses the big issues faced by society in Australia and globally – the changing environment, future materials and fuels, biotechnology and cyber security. Connect with us today.

    To Apply

    To be considered for this position, please apply online by submitting your cv and a separate cover letter that demonstrates how you meet the following selection criteria:


  • PhD in Synthetic Biology, with emphasis on biosensors and directed evolution;

  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills;

  • Ability to work collaboratively and work independently without close supervision;

  • Relevant experience with assessment, quantification and analysis of biosensor and metabolic pathway outputs;

  • Ability to devise and implement a wide range of synthetic biology approaches to metabolic engineering;

  • Experienced at molecular- and micro- biology protocols

  • Desirable

  • Understanding of the fundamentals of biofoundry automation

  • Understanding of standard flow cytometry procedures

  • Familiarity with literature related to the engineering and utilisation of biosensors in the field of metabolic engineering

  • Role Enquiries: Professor Ian Paulsen at

    If you're already part of the Macquarie Group (MQ University, U@MQ, MQ Health, MGSM), you'll need to apply through your employee Workday account. To apply for this job: Login to Workday and go to the Careers App > Find Jobs.

    Applications Close:

    02/10/2022 11:59 PM

    Equity & Diversity Statement

    At Macquarie University, we are committed to providing a working environment where each individual is valued, respected and supported to progress. Our priority is to ensure culture, policies and processes are truly inclusive and that no-one is disadvantaged on the basis of their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identity, gender, culture, disability, LGBTIQA+ identities, family and caring responsibilities, age, or religion. We encourage everyone who meets the selection criteria and shares Macquarie University's values of scholarship, empowerment and integrity to apply.

    Learn more about our progress towards Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

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    About the employer

    Established in 1964, Macquarie University is a public university located in the suburbs of Macquarie Park in Sydney, Australia. The establishment of the university marked a bold step towards transforming the otherwise traditional education system that was prevalent in Australia....