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Research Officer/post-doctoral Scientist Genome Integrity Unit

Children's Medical Research Institute - Sydney, NSW

Biotech, R&D, Science
Source: uWorkin

Source: uWorkin


  • Make an important contribution to the health of children through medical research
  • Work with one of Australia’s most respected national and independent medical research institutes
  • Gain valuable experience in the not-for-profit sector

Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) was Australia’s first dedicated paediatric research facility and is now one of the world’s most highly regarded independent medical research centres. Our research focuses on the areas of embryonic development and birth defects, cancer, neuroscience and gene therapy and we have a strong international reputation based on our research outcomes. It is also home to the world-first proteomics project, ProCan, which is changing the way cancer is diagnosed and treated. CMRI’s research programs are supported by state of the art facilities and committed research and support staff. Our achievements are made possible by a loyal network of community supporters, highly engaged donors and the very successful Jeans for Genes® fundraising campaign.

A three year post-doctoral position funded by an National Health & Medical Research Council Ideas Grant is now available. We are looking for a highly motivated researcher to explore the molecular mechanisms governing cell death following ablative radiation oncology treatment. The successful applicant will have a PhD (or be in the final stages of completeion) with a strong background in molecular biology, genome stabilty and DNA repair, and/or the innate immune response.

Position Summary

This is a collaborative project between the CMRI Genome Integrity Unit and the Sydney West Radiation Oncology Network. The position is physically located within the Genome Integrity Unit led by Associate Prof. Tony Cesare. The individual will be co-supervised by Dr. Harriet Gee, a clinician scientist and Radiation Oncologist from the University of Sydney/Westmead Hospital. The Genome Integrity Unit studies how mammalian cells maintain their DNA health, the physiological consequences when these processes are perturbed, and the implication on human diseases including cancer. Post-doctoral scientists are expected to lead their own projects, contribute to internal or external collaborations, and when possible guide student research. The ability to work as part of a team is essential.

Key experience and competencies

The individal employed will be ambitious post-doctoral scientist with a bold and creative approach to research. They will be capable of independent thought and project design, and will be able to work in a collaborative or team setting. Exceptional candidates will be eligible for internal CMRI training fellowships and the possibilities provided by this unique funding opportunity.

Essential characteristics:

  • PhD in genome stability, the cell cycle/DNA repair, and/or the innate immune response. Candidates in the final stages of PhD submission are welcome to apply.
  • Expert knowledge in one or more of the above research topics.
  • Technical expertise in microscopy and standard cell and molecular biology techniques.
  • Independent experimental design and completion.
  • Track record of scientific publication.
  • Track record of presentation at scientific meetings.

Desirable characteristics

  • Academic career ambition
  • Experience in CRISPR/Cas9 whole genome screening and analysis
  • Experience in genome editing
  • Experience in live-imaging and analysis.

Project specifics

Radiotherapy (RT) is responsible for 40% of cancer cures. Conventional RT is delivered in many low-dose treatments over several weeks. Ablative radiotherapy (ART) delivers a full RT course using high doses (≥ 8Gy) over a small number of treatments. ART is effective and increasingly used in the clinic, however, the molecular mechanisms of ART-induced cell death are not understood. Our team has made significant advances in understanding how cell cycle, genome stability, and cell death pathways cooperate to potentiate cell death following ART administration. We will continue this study to clarify the underlying molecular mechanisms, determine the potential for co-treatment with ART and pharmalogical inhibitors of genome stability or cell cyle regulation, address several open questions related to the innage immune response and cell death, and explore mechanisms of ART resistance. The candidate will address these questions through a molecular and cell biology approach using cancer and primary human cells measured through live and fixed microscopy and cell-based assays. Additionally, the candidate will explore mechanisms of resistance using un-biased CRISPR/Cas9 screening. The position holder will benefit from the genome stability research expertise within the CMRI (laboratories led by A/Prof. Cesare and Profs. Reddel, Pickett and Bryan), dedicated microscopy and proteomic facilities within CMRI, and the international collaborative network of the Genome Integrity Unit.

Laboratory details

The Genome Integrity Unit/Cesare laboratory is currently supported by two NHMRC ideas grants, an NHMRC project grant, and an ARC Discovery project. In the past three years we have published 16 papers total in journals including Nature (two articles), Nature Cell Biology, Molecular Cell, and Nature Communications. We are looking for outstanding individuals to join the research team at all levels. For more information please visit https://www.cmrijeansforgenes.org.au/research/research-teams/genome-integrity or https://twitter.com/TheCesareLab.

Position compensation

The candidate will be compensated with a competitive remuneration package in accordance with qualifications and experience. Additional benefits include the provision of a Public Benevolent Institution salary packaging scheme and participation in an employer-contributed superannuation fund.


Applications should include a cover letter (citing PV2108), curriculum vitae and contact details (phone/email) of three professional referees and be forwarded to recruitment@cmri.org.au

Closing date for applications is 8th March 2021

Please direct enquiries regarding the position to: Associate Professor Tony Cesare at tcesare@cmri.org.au