Postdoctoral Researcher

The Pirbright Institute - Viral Glycoproteins Group

Organisation position and purpose:

The successful candidate will be investigating enveloped RNA viruses and virus-host interactions. Using a range of state-of-the-art techniques including siRNA library screening, SILAC proteomics and high-throughput quantitative entry assays the post-holder will examine the properties of pneumoviruses that enable replication, pathogenicity and spread. We will discover which elements of the innate immune response to pneumovirus infection inhibit viral replication, pathogenesis and transmission. The pneumoviruses are a group of negative sense RNA viruses that cause significant illnesses in humans and animals.

You will perform key research, administrative, management duties. The work may require some travel to meet with collaborators in Birmingham and Glasgow.

Main duties and responsibility

Responsible for laboratory research, including (60%):

  • Collect research data; through a variety of research methods focusing on the three core projects
  • Characterising the molecular pathways that underpin pneumovirus, e.g. bRSV entry and exit
  • Dissecting the innate immune response to pneumoviruses, e.g. bRSV
  • Examining the host and viral factors that determine pneumovirus host-range
  • Apply knowledge to develop new intellectual understanding
  • Contribute to developing new models, techniques and methods
  • Consult with the principal investigator (PI) as appropriate, on the best undertaking of specific research activities
  • Consult with the PI as appropriate how to analyse and interpret the data from the specified research activities

Responsible for lab management, administration and supervision, including (20%):

  • Undertake management/administration arising from research
  • Deal with problems that may affect the achievement of research objectives and deadlines
  • Give guidance, support and advice to students on research related work using the most appropriate method of providing this supervision.

Responsible for research dissemination, communication, networking and funding including (20%):

  • Disseminate research findings for publication, research seminars, conferences etc.
  • Contribute to writing bids for research funding
  • Collaborate with co-authors, which aspects of the research findings to include in presentations or a publications.
  • Contribute to a research funding bid
  • In tandem with the PI, write articles for peer-reviewed academic journals
  • Liaise with external collaborators on the research
  • Give presentations and contribute to presentations at national and/or international conferences

This job description is only an outline of the tasks, responsibilities and outcomes required of the role. The jobholder will carry out any other duties as may be reasonably required by his/her line manager.

Specific requirements


  • A PhD or equivalent in virology, immunology, molecular cell biology
  • Passionate interest, and laboratory experience in molecular virology and/or innate immunity
  • Evidence of excellent oral and written communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with team members and other scientists
  • Experience presenting data at conferences
  • Commitment to delivering high quality, high impact research
  • Ability to contribute to the planning and organising of the research program and/or specific research project
  • High level analytical capability
  • Fluency in relevant models, techniques or methods and ability to contribute to developing new ones
  • Ability to assess and use resource requirements


  • Experience with quantitative proteomics
  • Experience with innate immunology research
  • Knowledge of recombinant virus technology
  • Interest in ‘Omics research including high-throughput screening
  • Proven track history of publishing scientific research as a first author
  • Evidence of networking skills
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South East England