Diabetes research jobs and resources

11/17/2018 10:17:26 AM

With Thanksgiving and the winter holiday season just around the corner, many of us are already dreaming of our favorite holiday dishes and overindulgence in sugary delights. We’ll just go on a diet and hit the gym in the New Year, and it’ll be all good, right? But, for the more than 30 million Americans living with diabetes who have difficulties regulating their blood glucose levels, life is not that simple.  

Diabetes is an everyday reality with constant thoughts and reminders about making conscientious food decisions and other lifestyle choices to effectively manage this metabolic disease. Not to mention the painstaking efforts to monitor the condition, the burden of healthcare costs and risks for other complications (e.g., neuropathy, cardiovascular disease). That’s why the American Diabetes Association is encouraging diabetic patients to share their stories during the month of November for American Diabetes Month.    

There are a number of resources on the American Diabetes Association website that you can use to spread awareness of the disease, advocate for research funding and help loved ones coping with diabetes (e.g., holiday-meal planning). Also, be sure to check out the ASBMB health observance webpage for a collection of personal stories and research news from members. And, for further help communicating about the different types of diabetes, see this World Diabetes Day graphic created by Compound Interest.  

There also are many opportunities as an early-career scientist to get involved with diabetes research and work toward developing new prevention and treatment strategies. This week, we feature a roundup of diabetes research resources and job openings.  

Diabetes research resources  

  • The NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases has a number of intramural and extramural research-training programs and awards for early-career scientists. Some useful webpages to review for a summary of these programs include “postdoc training at NIDDK”, “training and employment” for intramural programs and “research training and career development” for extramural opportunities.  

  • The NIDKK also provides core support and resources to a number of diabetes research centers that are conducting cutting-edge research in this area. Check out the websites of these research centers to see which ones have work ongoing in your area of interest and for info on related training programs and jobs.  

  • Many diabetes research foundations fund research and training grants or fellowships. Here are a few to look into. While many of these deadlines have passed for this year, you can look at the most recent request for applications to check eligibility requirements and start preparing materials in advance.  

    • The American Diabetes Association funds a number of training awards through its core research program that include postdoctoral fellowships and undergraduate internships. The next round of applications should be due in Spring 2019.  

    • JDRF (formerly called the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) also provides funding for postdoctoral fellowships in the area of Type 1 diabetes research. The next round of applications should be due in Summer 2019.  

    • The Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation accepts applications twice a year (June 30 and Dec. 30 for research grants that provide up to $50,000 over two years. Areas of funding interest include islet-cell transplantation, macrovascular disease and neuropathy. The evaluation criteria include relevance to the foundation’s mission, scientific merit and qualifications of the investigator(s). See the foundation website for information on how to apply.  

  • Another way to find companies and institutions that are active in the diabetes research landscape (and may have job openings) is to look up the partners and sponsors of major research initiatives and foundations. For example, the JDRF’s Network for Pancreatic Organ Donors with Diabetes initiative website lists out the members of its T1D research community.  

  • The Graduate Funding Information Center and Office of Research Development at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill jointly curate a funding information portal that includes a funding guide for diabetes research, which provides a comprehensive list of federal and non-federal funding opportunities.  

Weekly jobs roundup  

  • The Touchstone Diabetes Center at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (Dallas) is hiring for both a computational biologist and lab technician. The center conducts basic and clinical research on both Type 1 and 2 diabetes and related impacts on cardiovascular disease and cancer incidence. See the job postings for more information. No application deadlines are provided.  
  • The Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute at the City of Hope (Duarte, Calif.) has multiple research job openings, including professor, staff scientist, postdoctoral fellow and research associate positions. The institute has a long research history in the field of diabetes and focuses on identifying biomarkers and developing new therapeutics, including immune therapy and islet-cell transplantation. See the listings for more details and qualifications. (Note: You may need to use a different web browser or to refresh the webpage in order for all positions to be displayed properly when scrolling down the webpage.)  
  • The Diabetes and Obesity Center at the University of Louisville has several associated job openings, including an assistant professor with a background in analytical chemistry and a research technologist. See the postings for more details and instructions to apply. No application deadlines are provided. (Note: There does not appear to be an option to search job postings for keywords, so you may want to directly reach out to the research center to check on all available positions.)  
  • The Developmental Genomics Group within the Laboratory of Receptor Biology and Gene Expression Branch at the NIH’s National Cancer Institute (Bethesda, Md.) is seeking a postdoctoral fellow in the area of human pancreas biology. The candidate must have a Ph.D. or M.D. degree, one first-author publication and less than five years of previous postdoc experience. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Epidemiology Branch within the Division of Intramural Population Health Research at the NIH’s National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (Bethesda, Md.) invites applications for its postdoctoral fellowship program. Areas of research include gestational diabetes, Type 2 diabetes, obesity and nutrition, among other topical areas. The posting notes that postdocs will have the opportunity to develop their own research projects using existing data sets. The priority application deadline is Feb. 1.  
  • The Park Laboratory within the Division of Endocrinology at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School has an opening for a postdoctoral fellow to study the molecular mechanisms of how insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes develop in obesity. See the lab website for more details on research areas and the P.I.’s contact info to whom application materials are to be sent. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Bhatnagar Lab in the Department of Medicine/Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Alabama at Birmingham is hiring a postdoctoral researcher. Research will be focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms of insulin secretion and islet biology. The lab also is accepting both graduate and undergraduate research students. No application deadlines are provided.  
  • The Diabetes Group at Sanford Health (Sioux Falls, S.D.) is recruiting a manager/assistant scientist to direct and supervise research in the assigned area. This position is equivalent to an assistant-professor level. Minimum qualifications include a Ph.D. in a clinical, health or life-science field and three to six years of relevant postdoctoral experience. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Brand Lab at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging (Novato, Calif.) is seeking a postdoctoral researcher to study mitochondrial signaling in Type 2 diabetes. Minimum qualifications include a Ph.D. in biological or biomedical sciences, bioengineering or bioinformatics. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Department of Physiology and Biophysics at the University of Illinois at Chicago has an opening for a postdoctoral research associate to conduct molecular studies related to metabolic homeostasis and its role in diseases like diabetes. Minimum qualifications include a recent Ph.D. in physiology, molecular/cell biology, genetics or a related field. The application deadline is Nov. 30.

Donna Kridelbaugh is a contributor to the ASBMB Careers Blog. She holds an advanced degree in microbiology and is a former lab manager.   

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