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Canadian Association of University Teachers
Association canadienne des professeures et professeurs d'université

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Research Associate - Red Blood Cell Modification (2021)

University of British Columbia

The laboratory of Dr. Stephen G. Withers in the Department of Chemistry at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver is looking for a Research Associate to fill a position starting in the fall of 2021. The anticipated start date is September 1, 2021. The lab is located in a well-equipped research facility that provides a stimulating international and multidisciplinary research environment.

The position is focused on discovery of novel glycoside hydrolases in metagenomic libraries for the modification of surface antigens on red blood cells and the engineering of those for higher affinities and efficacies. Another second focus of the position is on the development of microfluidic screening systems. A third focus is on the collaborative analysis of the immune tolerance of the converted red blood cells. The successful candidate is expected to have completed their PhD and at least five years of postdoctoral research experience. The successful candidate must have demonstrated research experience in both metagenomics and glycobiology. Specifically, the candidate must have demonstrated experience with (1) generation of metagenomic fosmid and small insert libraries; (2) functional metagenomic screening in plate-based and microfluidic systems; (3) metagenomic hit validation and CAZyme classification; (4) protein expression, purification and biochemical characterization of glycoside hydrolases, glycosyltransferases and deacetylases; (5) chemoenzymatic synthesis of complex oligosaccharides such as the A and B blood antigen substrates; (6) handling, modification and molecular typing of RBCs. Demonstrated experience must be documented with first-author publications in impact-factor (>4) journals. The successful candidate must have demonstrated experience in the preparation of research proposals for funding agencies and patent applications.

Applications should send by email to and include a Curriculum Vitae and a Letter of Motivation. Please include “Research Associate Position in RBC modification” in the email subject line; incorrectly addressed applications will not be considered. Please indicate your legal status to work in Canada. The salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. The position is available starting fall 2021. Applications will be reviewed after February 4th, 2021 and the position will remain open until filled.

Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.