Research Associate

UCL Institute of Neurology - Sobell Department of Motor Neuroscience and Movement Disorders

Applications are invited for a Research Associate in the Sobell Department of Motor Neuroscience and Movement Disorders, UCL Institute of Neurology to join a research group investigating miRNA as biomarkers of motor neuron disease and their role in disease pathogenesis. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a rapidly progressive, incurable and fatal disease that causes the degeneration of motor neurons (MNs) and consequent generalized paralysis. Owing to lack of effective therapies, there is a desperate need to identify the underlying mechanisms of ALS. The focus of the Molecular Neuropathology laboratory is uncovering the molecular pathogenesis of motor neuron disease and other neurodegenerative conditions affecting mainly motor neurons. This project will involve working closely with our collaborator Dr Eran Hornstein (Weizmann Institute, Israel), who has standardized state-of-the-art methods to quantify miRNAs. This work will also require interacting with clinicians who have collected a vast range of samples from patients with ALS and other neurological diseases, and biologists who are leading in the generation and study of animal models of ALS and preclinical trials.

Applicants should have a PhD in Neuroscience, biology or related area and experience in RNA biology. Experience in molecular biology techniques including design and preparation of constructs and their insertion into mammalian cell lines is essential, as is an interest in the neuromuscular system and relevant pathological conditions, an excellent academic record with evidence of independent, creative work and the ability to work with mouse models of disease. Experience in the generation of Lentiviruses and in cell and primary tissue culture techniques is desirable.

The post is available from January 2017 and is funded by a grant from the Motor Neurone Disease Association to 31 December 2018 in the first instance. Starting salary on UCL Grade 7 in the range £34,056 - £41,163 pa, including London Allowance, superannuable.

You should apply for this post through UCL's online recruitment – where you can download a job description and person specification using ref: 1588717.

If you have any queries regarding the application process, please contact Samantha Robinson, Personnel Officer, Institute of Neurology, 23 Queen Square, London, WC1N 3BG (email:

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