Lipid job series: lipidomic method development

5/17/2019 2:29:28 PM

As we previously highlighted on the careers blog, metabolomics refers to profiling the small molecules (or metabolites) present within biological samples. One class of analyzed metabolites are lipids. (The corresponding -omics studies are referred to collectively as lipidomics, and a collection of lipid species in a sample is called the lipidome.) In general, quantitative lipid measurements employ some type of mass-spectrometry technique. With technological advances in MS instrumentation, lipidomic analysis is becoming more accessible to any research lab. To learn more about the latest trends in lipidomics, you can browse through the methods papers in the Journal of Lipid Research. Another useful website to check out is the Lipid MAPS Lipidomics Gateway, which provides open access to a large number of lipidomics resources (e.g., structure database, protocols). While much progress has been made in measuring lipids, more work is still needed to standardize methodologies and reference samples, as underscored in this recent ASBMB Today article on harmonizing lipidomics. So, for this week, we feature science jobs related to method development in lipidomics.  

Weekly jobs roundup  

  • Thermo Fisher Scientific has several open positions related to lipid analysis. These include an analytical chemistry R&D scientist in lipidomics/lipid biomarkers (Waltham, Mass.) and a validation scientist in the chromatography and mass spectrometry division (San Jose, Calif.). Both positions require significant experience with LC-MS methodologies and instrumentation. No application deadlines are provided.  
  • Synthetic Genomics (La Jolla, Calif.) is recruiting a metabolomics scientist to develop analytical methods for metabolite profiling and measurements of small molecules such as lipids. Minimum qualifications include a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry, biochemistry, physical chemistry or other relevant discipline. Preference is for candidates who are experienced in analyzing diverse types of biological materials (e.g., phototrophic systems) and within the context of metabolic engineering. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Mass Spectrometry Center in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy has two openings for mass-spectrometry specialists. Priority areas of expertise include metabolomics and quantitative mass spectrometry. Both positions require a bachelor’s degree in chemistry or a related field and varying levels of experience depending on the job rank. See the posting for more details. No application deadline is provided.  
  • Metabolon (Research Triangle Park, N.C.), a metabolomics diagnostic products and services company, has multiple openings across its contract services division that include sample preparation, data curation and quality assurance. Additionally, the company is hiring business development executives to promote its metabolomic and lipidomic services in the Boston and southern California markets. See the job board for a full listing of open positions. No application deadlines are provided.  
  • The Joint BioEnergy Institute (Emeryville, Calif.) at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is hiring a research associate to run mass spectrometry-based analytical methodologies for metabolite analysis, contribute to method development and support metabolic-engineering experiments. Desired qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, microbiology or a related field and up to two years of related experience. No application deadline is provided.  

Related posts

Metabolomics jobs

Lipid job series: inflammatory skin diseases

Lipid jobs on the brain

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

Stay updated on new posts by following the ASBMB on social media or click “follow” on this blog (must be a member and signed in). Also, be sure to check out the ASBMB Job Board for even more job listings.


Informal science-education careers: museums and science centers

5/8/2019 4:33:12 PM

This is the first post in a series focused on informal science-education careers. Informal science simply refers to STEM learning and activities being done outside the context of a formal classroom. Science education happens in museums and science centers, aquariums and zoos and other community-based programs (e.g., after-school program, citizen science). The overarching goals of these efforts are to foster a science-engaged public and inspire a lifelong pursuit of intellectual curiosity. Here are some basic qualifications and skills you can work on now to prepare for careers in science education.  

  • Gain hands-on experience in science outreach with the general public by volunteering or working in an informal-education setting. (Note: With the summer-vacation season approaching, many museums and science centers are hiring part-time/seasonal staff to work with visitors. See the weekly jobs roundup for examples.)  
  • Find opportunities to design your own curriculum and outreach activities. If you are interested in working with K–12 students, also learn more about state math and science standards (e.g., next-generation science standards). There is a need for learning activities designed to complement what is required to be taught in the classroom.  
  • Take the initiative to learn the ancillary functions required to manage education programs (e.g., supervising volunteers, fundraising). This all can be done within the context of designing and implementing your own community outreach program or piecemealed together by serving in specific roles (e.g., volunteer coordinator, fundraising committee).  
  • Whenever possible, work on your #scicomm and #sciart skills to communicate science to the general public and take training courses in these areas. Most jobs will require writing and visualization components when creating content for education programs and displays. (Note: The summer session of the ASBMB’s The Art of Science Communication online course is accepting applications until May 17.)  

For this week’s job roundup, we looked into current openings within the education and outreach departments of museums and science centers. A few job boards that post related positions include those maintained by the Association of Science-Technology Centers and American Alliance of Museums.  

Weekly jobs roundup  

  • The Center of Science and Industry (Columbus, Ohio) is hiring a scientist on staff who will be the primary lead on researching and creating scientific content for exhibits, education programming and marketing materials. Minimum qualifications include a Ph.D. in a relevant field and two years of outreach experience. No application deadline is provided.  
  • The Pacific Science Center (Seattle) has an opening for a science interpretation program supervisor to oversee exhibit floor and show operations, train volunteers and staff, and support development of education programs. Minimum qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in education, science or museum studies. No application deadline is provided. (Note: The science center also is hiring for a number of other education positions that include a weekend program educator, summer camp teacher and outreach education operation coordinator. Check out the job board for a full listing.)  
  • The California Academy of Sciences (San Francisco), which houses an aquarium, planetarium and natural history museum, is searching for an exhibit designs manager to join its Exhibit Studio team. Minimum qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in architecture, design or a related field and eight or more years of related experience. The application deadline is June 3. (Note: The academy also is hiring a communications coordinator to support public-relations efforts and contribute to its multimedia magazine. That job closes on May 13.)  
  • The Museum of Life and Science (Durham, N.C.) is seeking a director of STEM learning to lead its Innovation and Learning Experiences team. Minimum qualifications include a college degree in STEM, education or nonprofit management and 10 or more years working in a museum, informal education setting or related field of work. (Note: The museum is hiring for summer camp educators and assistants as well. Check the job board for more details.)  

Recommended reading (ASBMB Today)

The CAISE for informal science education

Coming soon to a science center near you: You!

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

Stay updated on new posts by following the ASBMB on social media or click “follow” on this blog (must be a member and signed in). Also, be sure to check out the ASBMB Job Board for even more job listings

Science careers at independent research institutes

5/3/2019 12:54:51 PM

When we think about options for research-related science careers, we often talk about a bifurcated career pathway: academia or industry. But, as we mentioned in a previous post on faculty jobs outside academia, there are research jobs available in the nonprofit sector as well. One such category is independent research institutes. These are nonprofit organizations, often founded by a prominent scientist or a philanthropic donor or family, with a mission-driven focus on specific research disciplines. Many of these institutions run their own education and training programs and sometimes are affiliated with a university. As an independently operated research community, these organizations have hiring needs for faculty, postdocs and research staff, along with administration and support positions. For this week’s post, we have provided a few resources to help you locate this type of research institute, so you can explore this option further. We also have included short profiles for a subset of these independent research institutes and a sampling of open positions as listed on each institute’s job board.  

Identifying independent research institutes  

  • As these institutes are nonprofit organizations, you can do keyword searches or browse by categories on nonprofit databases (e.g., Charity Navigator, GuideStar) to find results.  

Weekly jobs roundup  

  • The Van Andel Institute (Grand Rapids, Mich.) was established by Jay and Betty Van Andel in 1996 as an independent biomedical research institute and science education organization. VAI is composed of a research institute, education institute (focused on K–12 science outreach) and a graduate school. There are research training programs at all levels from undergraduates to physician scientists. The research division is specifically focused on elucidating the biomolecular origins of cancer, Parkinson’s and other diseases and finding effective treatments. According to Erica Gobrogge (VAI postdoctoral affairs specialist), they have started several new research initiatives and are ramping up the postdoctoral program. Currently, there are multiple openings for postdocs within neurodegenerative research areas. Project topics include neuronal death, infections as triggers of Parkinson’s disease and alpha-synuclein pathogenicity. Check out the job board for a complete listing of postdoctoral and staff positions.  
  • The Salk Institute for Biological Studies (La Jolla, Calif.) was founded by Jonas Salk, inventor of the polio vaccine, and opened in 1963 to create a collaborative environment for scientists to explore the basic principles of life and the benefits of this research for society. The institute has scientific program areas in aging and regenerative medicine, cancer biology, immune-system biology, metabolism and diabetes, neuroscience and neurological disorders, and plant biology. The Salk careers webpage lists out openings for faculty, postdoctoral and staff positions. The most recently posted staff jobs include a bioinformatic analyst, lab technicians in systems neurobiology and a research assistant in molecular neurobiology.  (Note: Most of the postdoctoral research jobs listed seem to be outdated. You may want to reach out and check if they just keep these postings up as an open call for applicants. Additionally, this webpage notes that if you are interested in working with a faculty member not listed then to contact them directly.)  
  • The Scripps Research Institute (La Jolla, Calif., and Jupiter, Fla.) was founded in 1924 by journalist and philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps as the Scripps Metabolic Clinic to treat diabetes and other metabolic disorders. Since that time, Scripps Research has become a world-renowned biomedical research institute with five interrelated departments in chemistry, immunology and microbiology, integrative structural and computational biology, molecular medicine and neuroscience. There are education and training programs (e.g., graduate program) available as well. Scripps Research also houses Calibr, a nonprofit translational research institute advancing therapeutics for unmet medical needs. Check out the job board to view all current job opportunities. These include many recent postings for research interns, research assistants and technicians and postdoctoral associates at both Scripps Research locations. Prospective postdocs also are encouraged to directly contact faculty mentors to express interest.  
  • The Wistar Institute (Philadelphia) lays claim to being the nation’s first independent biomedical research institution, originally established in 1892 as an anatomical teaching museum. The institute specializes in the research fields of cancer, immunology, infectious diseases and vaccine development. Current job openings include two research assistants in a virology laboratory focused on the mechanisms of disease in HIV-1 infection, a postdoctoral fellow in cancer biology and two postdoctoral fellow openings in an epigenetics lab. Wistar also offers a number of education and training programs. (Note: The postdoctoral program webpage indicates that scientists can reach out to a P.I. individually to express interest in postdoctoral work in their lab.)

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

Stay updated on new posts by following the ASBMB on social media or click “follow” on this blog (must be a member and signed in). Also, be sure to check out the ASBMB Job Board for even more job listings