Research Assistant

The Pirbright Institute

The Pirbright Institute is a unique national centre that works through its highly innovative fundamental and applied bioscience to enhance the UK capability to contain, control, and eliminate viral diseases of animals and viruses that spread from animals to humans. We thereby support the competitiveness of UK livestock and poultry producers, and improve the health and quality of life of both animals and people.


As part of a recent BBSRC funded collaboration between The Pirbright Institute, Anthony Nolan Research Institute (ANRI), and Moredun, an indefinite Research Assistant position with initial funding for 2 years is available.

Organisation Position

This post will be part of the Immunogenetics Group led by Dr John Hammond.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

Responsible for helping to design and execute DNA enrichment and sequencing experiments;

  • Perform a range of molecular biological techniques (e.g. nucleic acid isolation, PCR amplification, molecular cloning)
  • Maintain cell cultures
  • Prepare samples for sequencing (Sanger and Next Generation Sequencing)
  • Aid in the analysis and interpretation of sequencing data
  • Design and implement experimental methods

Responsible for analysing and presenting data;

  • Present data internally
  • Present data at national and international conferences as appropriate
  • Maintain records and databases of results
  • Prepare results for publication
  • Aid in the day to day running of the laboratory

This job description is only an outline of the tasks, responsibilities and outcomes required of the role.

Benefits of the Post

The post is graded at a Band C and is a limited term contract with funding until January 2019.

The salary is £27,219 to £28,939 depending on qualifications and experience.

This is a full time role of 37 hours per week, Monday to Friday.

Additional Information

  • Any offer of employment will be subject to security screening, health clearance, receipt of satisfactory references, and continued right to work and remain in the UK.
  • The Institute is engaged in Research work on a number of virus diseases of livestock, several of which are highly infectious to livestock, compliance with the Disease Security Regulations is an essential requirement of employment.
  • For those applicants where English is not their first language, please note that the successful applicant must be able to prove their ability to communicate in English.

How to Apply

It is an Institute policy to use a Pirbright Institute application form, please ensure that you complete this form as a CV alone will not be accepted.

To view or apply for this vacancy please visit The Pirbright Institute website, where an application form and further details can be found: (job reference 16P-68).

Person Specification Essential

  • Degree in Biosciences or related subject or equivalent experience (s)
  • Computer literate (s)
  • Excellent communication skills (i)
  • Meticulous attention to detail (i)
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills (i)
  • Time management skills (i)
  • Reliability under pressure (i)
  • Decision making and problem solving skills (i)
  • Ability to work independently (i)
  • Willingness to work as part of a team and to be open-minded and cooperative (i)
  • High level of motivation and ambition (i)


  • Experience in cell culture (s)
  • Experience with DNA sequencing (s)
  • Experience of next generation sequencing (s)
  • Basic statistical knowledge (s)
  • An understanding of the mammalian immune system (i)
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