Research Associate - The Chemical Biology and Function of Natural Modified DNA Bases in Genomes

University of Cambridge - Department of Chemistry

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 2 years in the first instance.

We are seeking a highly motivated postdoctoral scientist to work with Professor Sir Shankar Balasubramanian on a multidisciplinary Wellcome Trust-funded programme to investigate the chemistry and biology of nucleic acid base modifications. The position is based in either the Department of Chemistry or Cancer Research UK's Cambridge Institute and is available from July 2018 onwards.

Chemical modifications to DNA bases impart essential epigenetic and regulatory functions. For example, while 5-methylcytosine is well-studied, little is known about its oxidised derivatives, 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, 5-formylcytosine and 5-carboxylcytosine or indeed any other modified base. Our lab employs and develops chemical, physical, biological and genomic approaches to investigate the presence of, and to gain mechanistic insights into modified base function in human, mouse and parasite genomes with a view to understanding their potential biological and clinical relevance.

We wish to appoint a molecular/genome biologist/biochemist who will design and implement novel approaches to investigate the mechanisms associated with the regulation of modified bases and their signalling functions and to implement and exploit new genomics workflows. The candidate should possess strong laboratory skills; practical experience in using high-throughput sequencing (e.g. ChIP-seq/RNA-seq), genome editing, cell-based assays and nucleic acid biochemistry would be of particular advantage.

We seek individuals with excellent communication skills and the ability to work effectively as part of a multidisciplinary team. The candidate should demonstrate a rigorous intellectual capacity for innovation and show exceptional initiative and independent thinking.

Candidates should have (or be about to receive) a PhD in a relevant discipline. See for further information.

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit: This will take you to the role on the University’s Job Opportunities pages. There you will need to click on the 'Apply online' button and register an account with the University's Web Recruitment System (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Please ensure that you upload a 2-page Curriculum Vitae (CV), a covering letter and publications list in the Upload section of the online application. If you upload any additional documents that have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application.

For queries regarding applying online for this post, please contact Jo Lockhart, PA to Professor Sir Shankar Balasubramanian, email:

Please quote reference MA14813 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The Department holds an Athena SWAN silver award for women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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