MD Anderson Cancer Center Research Assistant II in Houston, Texas

MISSION STATEMENT

The mission of The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center is to eliminate cancer in Texas, the nation, and the world through outstanding programs that integrate patient care, research and prevention, and through education for undergraduate and graduate students, trainees, professionals, employees and the public.

SUMMARY

The primary purpose of the Research Assistant II position is to perform complex experiments requiring advanced laboratory techniques while providing technical support through designing and implementing a variety of laboratory protocols and experiments for several faculty members in the Department of Cancer Systems Imaging.

JOB SPECIFIC COMPETENCIES

Research Support

Perform technical laboratory duties to supply information as part of a research project or laboratory. Perform duties in accordance with general and/or specific plans. Assemble and operate laboratory apparatus and equipment. Record and evaluate data obtained, in accordance with methods requested. Execute analytical benchtop work involving DNA/RNA extraction, cloning, PCR, protein analysis, primary T cell expansion, tumor cell line culture, lentiviral production, stable cell transduction, and radioisotope cell uptake assays, animal experimentation (cell injection, surgery, tissue harvest, and bioluminescence and positron emission tomography imaging).

Tissue Culture: Must have excellent tissue culture technique and be able to maintain and store cell lines under sterile and healthy conditions. Candidate should follow ATCC guideline for cell culture and cryogenic storage. Will be responsible for maintaining cell culture supplies. Candidate will purify cell populations using advanced techniques such as ficoll density gradients and immunoaffinity. Candidate must have the ability to observe and identify cell changes under the microscope, determine cell counts and cell viability. Utilize aseptic techniques and biosafety measures in experimental work.

Animals: Candidate would know how to perform oral gavages, i.p. injection, subcutaneous injections for subcutaneous tumor growth, tail vein catheterizations, and necropsy procedures. Candidate would successfully complete training and certification to handle and work with live animals, primarily mice, in a safe and humane manner following institutional guidelines. Candidate would be responsible for mouse colony maintenance by setting up breeders, weaning as needed, tail snipping, genotyping using PCR, monitoring health and welfare of animals, and efficiently maintaining animal inventory records. Assisting fellow laboratory personnel with animal experiments such as imaging and surgeries. Stores and analyzes animal tissue and keep records of ongoing data for future experiments.

Basic Techniques: Molecular biology and cancer biology. Candidate will extract metabolites from tissue and cell culture and generate experimental samples for analysis by nuclear magnetic resonance or mass spectrometry. Isolates, purifies and analyzes RNA, DNA and protein including hybridization, gel electrophoresis, staining, performing PCR reactions, quantitative RT-PCR assays, DNA sequencing and assays for signal transducing. Take pictures of cells or tissue on the light or fluorescence microscope. Prepares slides, graphs and tables via photography, computer or manually. Communicate results to the principal investigator and share in group presentations of these data as well as promote ongoing projects in the laboratory. Assist with compilation of data for presentation or publication.

Experience in flow cytometry and immunoblotting (Western) required. Perform other laboratory duties as requested.

Laboratory Organization

Assist with general lab functions such as organizes and restocks common supplies, receives and distributes orders, orders lab supplies and tracks orders, disposes biohazard boxes and cleans tissue culture media waste flasks, prepares autoclave items and maintains glassware. Ensure inventory of gas cylinders such as O2 and CO2 for the imaging suite. Perform routine maintenance of ultra low freezers, liquid nitrogen, C02 and water levels. Should be able to maintain equipment such as high-speed centrifuges, pH meters and microfuges. Manually operate and maintain the lab equipment. Must be able to comply with all institutional safety policies including Universal Precautions and OSHA standards when handling toxic, hazardous, flammable, radioactive or potentially infectious or carcinogenic materials. Candidate may be required to wear common protective garments or equipment such as gloves, eye protection, face mask, gown or lab coat, etc. Cleans laboratory benches as required. Share in general maintenance of laboratory including monitoring radioisotopes, aliquot reagents and preparation of common solutions

Technical Assistance

Apply basic background in science to the application of laboratory techniques, using judgment, analysis and evaluation. Read literature and confer with superiors regarding new procedures. Master essential skills and techniques used in the laboratory. Develop new and novel procedures for carrying out assigned research by reading literature and conferring with peers and superiors; implement these new procedures. Recordkeeping and data collection required on all experimental protocols performed.

Other duties as assigned

REQUIREMENTS

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

Preferred Education: Master's Level Degree

Experience: Two years of experience in scientific or experimental research work. No experience required with preferred degree.

Preferred Experience: No experience with preferred degree.

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. http://www.mdanderson.org/about-us/legal-and-policy/legal-statements/eeo-affirmative-action.html