MD Anderson Cancer Center Jobs

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MD Anderson Cancer Center Research Assistant II - Epigenetics & Molecular Carcinogenesis (Ting Laboratory) in Houston, Texas

The Department of Epigenetics and Molecular Carcinogenesis is an interdisciplinary, basic science research department that conducts groundbreaking research aimed at defining the mechanisms controlling normal cell growth, proliferation, differentiation, and survival as well as mechanisms controlling genome maintenance to identify the aberrations in these processes that drive cancer.

Epigenetics and Molecular Carcinogenesis (

Epigenetic gene regulation is important for both normal development and disease states. In cancers, aberrant promoter CpG island hypermethylation correlates highly with gene inactivation and can account for lack of gene expression where mutations do not exist. Dr. Ting is interested in dissecting the mechanisms of epigenetic gene silencing and understanding the functional relevance of DNA methylation in diseases. Dr. Ting's lab has three major focus areas:

  • Pioneering technical and computational tools for genome-wide DNA methylation assay. Dr. Ting developed MBD-isolated Genome Sequencing (MiGS), which is a cost-effective technique to survey whole genome DNA methylation patterns. The Ting lab also develops computational tools ( that facilitate sequencing data analyses and interpretation.

  • Defining novel and clinically relevant functions for DNA methylation. We have defined genome-wide abnormal DNA methylation patternsin colon, bladder, and prostate cancers. Knowing where these disruptions occur enabled us to generate and test hypotheses regarding the function of these changes. We investigate both gene promoters and non-promoter regions with the goal of defining context-specific functions of DNA methylation.

  • Delineating the mechanics of DNA methylation in cancer. Wide-spread disruptions to DNA methylation patterns are contribute to tumorigenesis and progression, but the regulatory mechanisms that establish, maintain, and modify these patterns are still being worked out. Researchers in Dr. Ting's lab explore the roles for epigenetic enzymes, small non-coding RNAs, and environmental exposures in the initiation and maintenance of abnormal DNA methylation patterns in cancer.


Research Support

  • Provide experimental and technical support for ongoing research projects.

  • Perform duties in accordance with general and/or specific plans.

  • Assists in the design of laboratory experiments, techniques, and protocols.

  • Processes, organizes and summarizes data, reporting experiment results using a variety of scientific, word processing, spreadsheet or statistical software applications or program platforms.

  • Preparation of tissues, cell cultures, blood samples, and perform other laboratory duties, such as the handling of laboratory animals.

  • Assist in general laboratory operation, ensures the laboratory is prepared for experiments, performs related laboratory maintenance such as maintaining and cleaning equipment and assisting with monitoring and stocking supplies, preparation of stock solutions and other reagents.

  • Collect and analyze data from experimental procedures and discuss results with the principal investigator.

  • Document experimental results and maintain an organized laboratory notebook.

  • Prepare materials for submission to granting agencies and foundations.

  • May instruct other staff and students in basic laboratory techniques.

Expertise and Specialization

  • Apply basic background and experience in science to the application of laboratory techniques, using judgment, analysis and evaluation.

  • Read literature and confer with superiors regarding new procedures, and modify them according to the needs of the project.

  • Master complex skills and techniques used in the laboratory.

  • Learn new skills or technology.

Laboratory Organization

  • Coordinate procedures, assemble materials and contribute to the laboratory.

  • Participate in ongoing learning and demonstrate application of it in carrying out assignments.

  • Follow laboratory guidelines regarding order processing, handling of rush orders and special jobs.

  • Perform other duties as assigned.


Required: Bachelor's degree with major course works in one of the basic sciences.

Preferred: Master's degree with major course works in one of the basic sciences.


Required:One year experience in scientific or experimental research work. No experience required with preferred degree.

Preferred: Experience with cell culture and routine molecular biology and biochemistry techniques in an academic or other laboratory setting.

It is the policy of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to provide equal employment opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, age, national origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or any other basis protected by institutional policy or by federal, state or local laws unless such distinction is required by law.

Additional Information

  • Requisition ID: 155322

  • Employment Status: Full-Time

  • Employee Status: Regular

  • Work Week: Days

  • Minimum Salary: US Dollar (USD) 42,000

  • Midpoint Salary: US Dollar (USD) 52,500

  • Maximum Salary : US Dollar (USD) 63,000

  • FLSA: exempt and not eligible for overtime pay

  • Fund Type: Soft

  • Work Location: Onsite

  • Pivotal Position: Yes

  • Referral Bonus Available?: Yes

  • Relocation Assistance Available?: Yes

  • Science Jobs: Yes