Research Assistant (Gut Carbohydrate Fermentation)
Post Details
Job Title
Research Assistant (Gut Carbohydrate Fermentation)
Post Number
1003756
Closing Date
5 Sep 2019
Grade
SC7
Starting Salary
£24,815 - £30,270
Hours per week
37
Project Title
Starch structure and behaviour in the colon
Expected/Ideal Start Date
14 Oct 2019
Months Duration
8
Interview Date
18 Sep 2019

Job Description

Main Purpose of the Job

A Research Assistant is sought to assist with ongoing experiments in the Warren lab using the colon model system. In particular, these will be continuing the labs main focus through our BBSRC ISP grant on carrying out colon model experiments using a wide range of starches from different sources as substrates within the model colon system based at QIB. This will require the post holder to set up and run the model colon system. This will be followed by metabolite analysis using 1H NMR, which the post holder will be expected to assist with, both preparing samples and subsequent analysis. The post holder will also be expected to carry out DNA extraction for subsequent 16S sequencing. Additionally, the post holder will assist with starch structural analysis methods including size exclusion chromatography and differential scanning calorimetry for analysis of substrates.

Key Relationships

The post holder will report directly to Dr. Fred Warren as line manager, and to Prof. Pete Wilde, acting head of Food, Innovation and Health. The post holder will also work closely with Hannah Harris, the ISP PDRA in the Warren group.

Main Activities & Responsibilities

Percentage
Assisting with in vitro model colon experiments
60
Preparing samples for 1H NMR analysis and DNA extraction for illumina sequencing
20
Starch structural analysis (debranching samples for SEC analysis, DSC experiments)
10
Data analysis and assisting in preperation of manuscripts
5
Assisting students/visitors with experiments
5
As agreed with line manager, any other duties commensurate with the nature of the role

Person Profile

Education & Qualifications

Requirement
Importance
BSc in biology, biochemistry, microbiology or related subject
Essential
MSc or PhD in biology, biochemistry, microbiology or related subject
Desirable

Specialist Knowledge & Skills

Requirement
Importance
Skilled in using colon models
Essential
DNA extraction
Desirable
Some knowledge of metabolomic methods
Desirable
Carbohydrate structural analysis
Desirable

Relevant Experience

Requirement
Importance
Experience with batch fermentation/colonic systems
Desirable
Experience with microbiological techniques/anaerobic culture methods
Desirable
Experience handling human samples
Desirable

Interpersonal & Communication Skills

Requirement
Importance
Excellent time management and organisational skills
Essential
Ability to follow instructions/Standard Operating Procedures
Essential
Excellent communication skills, both written and oral
Essential
Good interpersonal skills, with the ability to work well as part of a team
Essential

Additional Requirements

Requirement
Importance
Attention to detail
Essential
Promotes equality and values diversity
Essential
Willingness to embrace the expected values and behaviours of all staff at the Institute, ensuring it is a great place to work
Essential
Able to present a positive image of self and the Institute, promoting both the international reputation and public engagement aims of the Institute
Essential
Willingness to work outside standard working hours when required
Essential

Who We Are

Quadram Institute Bioscience

The Quadram Institute is at the forefront of a new interface between food science, gut biology and health, developing solutions to worldwide challenges in food-related disease and human health.

We are engaged in fundamental and translational food and health research, alongside clinical studies, endoscopy and industry, working together to become a leading international hub for food and health research, combining scientific excellence and clinical expertise, delivering impacts on patient care and accelerating innovation.

The Quadram Institute is a diverse and multicultural scientific community. We thrive on our international and European links, appointing staff from across the world. We expect this to continue post Brexit. However, any candidate who would like further information on current or anticipated immigration requirements can contact the HR Team on +44 (0)1603 450888 or nbi.recruitment@nbi.ac.uk.

For more information about working at Quadram Institute Bioscience, please click here.

Department

Food Innovation and Health

Group Details

The Warren group is a research group focussed on carbohydrate structure, function and behaviour in the GI tract. We currently comprise three PhD students (with a fourth starting in October) and two post-docs. We are a diverse group, from a range of scientific backgrounds including chemistry, microbiology and nutrition and bring our expertise together to explore the structuring and functionality of carbohydrates

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Research Assistant (Gut Carbohydrate Fermentation)

Applications are invited for a Research Assistant to join the Laboratory of Dr Fred Warren in the Food Innovation and Health Programme at Quadram Institute Bioscience (QIB), based in Norwich, UK.

Background:

The Food Innovation and Health Programme is focussed on understanding how individual foods and diets can help us to maintain and improve our health, and developing innovative foods that promote healthy ageing.

The role:

The Research Assistant will assist with ongoing experiments in the Warren lab using the colon model system. In particular, these will be continuing the lab's main focus through our BBSRC ISP grant on carrying out colon model experiments using a wide range of starches from different sources as substrates within the model colon system based at QIB. This will require the post holder to set up and run the model colon system.

This will be followed by metabolite analysis using 1H NMR, which the post holder will be expected to assist with, both preparing samples and subsequent analysis. The post holder will also be expected to carry out DNA extraction for subsequent 16S sequencing.

Additionally, the post holder will assist with starch structural analysis methods including size exclusion chromatography and differential scanning calorimetry for analysis of substrates.

The ideal candidate:

We are looking to hire a Research Assistant with at a minimum a BSc in a biological sciences subject, preferably also with a higher degree, to assist with our ongoing research projects.

We are looking for an enthusiastic and dedicated team member with a passion for linking structure and composition of foods to the microbiome and health outcomes.

Applicants should have Excellent time management and organisational skills. Previous experience with batch fermentation/colonic systems, microbiological techniques/anaerobic culture methods and handling human samples is desirable.  

Additional information:

Salary on appointment will be within the range £24,815 to £30,270 per annum depending on qualifications and experience. This is a full time post for a contract of 8 months.

Interviews will be held on 18 September 2019. 

Please note, this post does not meet UKVI requirements to provide Tier 2 visa sponsorship.

We are committed to equal opportunities and welcome applications from all sectors of society.  The Institute supports equality of opportunity within the workplace and expects all employees to share and display these values.  To support our commitment, we have a range of family, faith and diversity friendly working arrangements to help all staff achieve excellence in their area of work.

As a Disability Confident employer, we guarantee to offer an interview to all disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for this vacancy.

About the Quadram Institute:

The Quadram Institute is a new interdisciplinary research institute at the forefront of a new era in food and health research. Its mission is to understand how food and the gut microbiota are linked to the promotion of health and the prevention of disease. A partnership between Quadram Institute Bioscience, the University of East Anglia, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and BBSRC, it brings together scientists and clinicians in a new state-of-the-art building. The Quadram Institute is based on the Norwich Research Park, one of Europe’s largest centres of life sciences and home of the John Innes Centre and The Earlham Institute. (https://quadram.ac.uk/).

The closing date for applications will be 5 September 2019. 

The Quadram Institute Bioscience is a registered charity (No. 1058499) and is an Equal Opportunities Employer.