Laboratory Technician

The Pirbright Institute - Non Vesicular Reference Laboratory

The Pirbright Institute

The Pirbright Institute delivers world-leading research to understand, predict, detect and respond to viral disease outbreaks. We study viruses of livestock that are endemic and exotic to the UK, including zoonotic viruses, by using the most advanced tools and technologies to understand host-pathogen interactions in animals and arthropod vectors. Our major strength in understanding the immune systems of livestock provides a platform to control current diseases and respond to emerging threats.

Our Institute is made up of a dynamic and vibrant community of staff covering a diverse set of chosen fields, backgrounds and experience. We all play a crucial role in furthering the Institute’s aspirations, advancing the frontiers of science and knowledge through our excellent scientific research, knowledge sharing and contribution; with a real focus in improving the world in which we live. Our outlook is always balanced by our strong sense of purpose, values and behaviours and an unwavering commitment to a ‘one Institute’ approach.

Organisation position and purpose:

The successful candidate will support the day to day activities of the Non-Vesicular Reference at The Pirbright Institute. The primary purpose of the NVRL is to provide a diagnostic service and characterise outbreaks of certain viral diseases that have a strong predisposition for trans-boundary spread.

Main duties and responsibility

  • Testing of submissions to the NVRL
  • Storage of samples and archiving
  • Under the direction of the technical manager to perform independent testing to validate commercial assays for use in the NVRL.
  • Actively seek out novel diagnostics that could be applied within the reference laboratories
  • Liaison with relevant research groups at Pirbright to aid research collaborations
  • Day-to-day running of the laboratory
  • Sample receipt and processing
  • Data entry on laboratory management system
  • Preparation and review of quality documents
  • Preparation of risk/COSHH assessments

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

Personal behaviours:

Time management, reliability under pressure, ethical/credible, collaborative, emotionally intelligent, diplomatic, results driven,

Specific requirements:


  • BSc in biological sciences.
  • Experience in serology
  • Experience in PCR
  • Strong interest in microbiology/virology
  • Efficient in Microsoft Software.
  • Experience in working to ISO/IEC 17025 standards or equivalent


  • A MSc or equivalent in a relevant branch of biosciences
  • Understanding of the steps required for assay development and validation

What we offer:

  • Generous Group Personal Pension Scheme and life cover (subject to age and earnings)
  • 25 days annual leave per annum, pro rata, plus 10.5 public and privilege days
  • Pirbright gym with subsidised membership
  • Pirbright social club
  • Pirbright Lifestyle Hub (employee discount site)
  • Cycle to work
  • Subsidised staff restaurant
  • Childcare vouchers and a subsidised childcare allowance
  • Free onsite parking

To apply for this vacancy please quote job reference number and send a copy of your CV with an optional cover letter to

For more information and to access the full job description, visit Jobs | The Pirbright Institute

We acknowledge, understand and embrace diversity, equality and inclusion

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South East England