Realising the potential of synthetic biology for health


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Postdoctoral Research Associate: DNA repair at the single molecule level in bacteria
Vacancy Ref: : 047146 Closing Date : 29-Mar-2019
Contact Person : Dr Meriem El Karoui Contact Number :  
Contact Email :

We are seeking a highly motivated individual to work as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Dr. M. El Karoui’s laboratory to investigate how DNA double strand breaks are repaired in Escherichia coli. The post holder will investigate how the different steps of the repair process are coordinated using real time single molecule imaging. This will involve a variety of techniques including quantitative fluorescence microscopy, single molecule microscopy as well as image analysis and biophysical modelling. The post holder will become part of an exciting collaboration with Pr. Kapanidis (Oxford) and Pr. Dillingham (Bristol) in a BBSRC-funded project to investigate DNA repair by homologous recombination in live E. coli cells.

Applicants should have (or soon obtain) a PhD in biophysics, engineering or related topics and have a strong interest in multidisciplinary approaches to biology. Previous experience in quantitative microscopy is essential. Experience in particle tracking, localization microscopy, image analysis, time-series analysis, and quantitative cell imaging is highly desirable. You should also have a strong publication record and the ability to work autonomously in an interdisciplinary environment.

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The post is fixed term for 3 years.

Postdoctoral Research Associate in Computational Systems & Synthetic Biology
Vacancy Ref: : 047185 Closing Date : 01-Apr-2019
Contact Person : Diego Oyarzun Contact Number :  
Contact Email :

We are looking for a talented postdoctoral researcher to join the group of Dr Diego Oyarzún at the University of Edinburgh ( The group develops computational methods for analysis of biochemical networks in systems & synthetic biology. Our main applications are in biotechnology and healthcare in collaboration with wetlab partners in the UK and abroad.

Our current projects focus on metabolic dynamics, gene regulation and mechanistic ‘whole-cell’ modelling. This research covers a wide range of modelling formalisms, including nonlinear dynamics, kinetic modelling, dynamic optimization, stochastic analysis, flux balance analysis and complex networks. We seek candidates who can engage in one or more of these areas, or who bring new expertise and synergies to the group. A particular area of interest for this post is the identification of antibiotic targets using kinetic models for metabolic pathways.

The group is co-located at the School of Biological Sciences and School of Informatics, with privileged access to cutting-edge biological research and machine learning expertise. The successful applicant will join the thriving ecosystem of SynthSys – the Edinburgh Centre for Systems and Synthetic Biology ( We seek creative applicants keen to join a multidisciplinary team in one of Europe’s most thriving and stimulating cities. As part of the group you will benefit from excellent mentoring and opportunities for career development such as student supervision and project design.

Candidates must have a PhD in a related area, e.g. Mathematics, Bioengineering, Computer Science, Physics, or Control Engineering. We expect candidates to have a promising publication record, excellent mathematical and computational skills, and the ability to communicate their research effectively. For enquiries please email including a brief statement of interests and CV.

The post is offered on a fixed-term basis for 14 months initially.

Research Associate in Mammalian Synthetic Biology
Vacancy Ref: : 047174 Closing Date : 01-Apr-2019
Contact Person : Dr Filippo Menolascina Contact Number :  
Contact Email :

A fixed term postdoctoral appointment is available within the School of Engineering at the University of Edinburgh to work on the automatic (re)design of synthetic promoters, primarily for mammalian cells, focusing on the control Chimeric Antigen Receptors expression.

As part of this project, the successful candidate will develop a microfluidics-based platform to perform high-throughput cell screening and will liaise with the Edinburgh Genome Foundry to build, and automatically model, large libraries of synthetic inducible promoters.

They will combine machine learning and computational optimisation to predict promoter strength, leakiness and automatically optimise promoter design to meet set specifications (e.g. maximise fold induction, minimise response time). They will also build a promoter to maximise sensitivity/specificity of transgene expression.

The ideal candidate should have a PhD with a background in Engineering or Computer Science and previous experience with techniques/protocols in Cell Biology and Microscopy. Experience with microfluidic device fabrication is desirable.

This post is full time and fixed term until June 2021.

Research Technologist
Vacancy Ref: : 047259 Closing Date : 03-Apr-2019
Contact Person : Dr Hille Tekotte Contact Number :  
Contact Email :

We are looking for a highly motivated and talented Research Technologist to become part of a friendly and enthusiastic team conducting key laboratory research using automated synthetic biology.

You will take a lead role in developing and characterizing a library of DNA constructs that will help accelerate research in new gene therapy approaches ongoing in the UK Centre for Mammalian Synthetic Biology at the University of Edinburgh and the School of Biomedical Sciences, Medicine and Veterinary Medicine. This is a great opportunity to be part of the fast growing UK synthetic biology community and develop skills in high demand in both academia and industry.

You will have a graduate degree in biology plus work experience, or several years’ experience of relevant technical or scientific work. You will have a significant experience with molecular and/or synthetic biology techniques and have a demonstrable knowledge of cutting edge technology. You will be a good team player, computer literate and very organised in the laboratory.

The successful candidate will work in the Edinburgh Genome Foundry ( and be closely associated with several labs in the UK Centre for Mammalian Synthetic Biology (the Centre) and the School of Biomedical Sciences, Medicine and Veterinary Medicine ( The Centre is pioneering the development of the essential tools and technologies needed to realize the full potential of synthetic biology for industrial biotechnology applications, mammalian cell biology and human medicine, in particular the development of gene therapies. With world-leading faculty members drawn from the Biological Sciences, Medicine, Engineering, Informatics and Social Sciences, we offer an exciting and collaborative research and training environment for researchers at all stages of their careers.

This post is offered on a fixed term basis for 19 months.

Research Fellow/Associate in Computational Biology
Vacancy Ref: : 047339 Closing Date : 19-Apr-2019
Contact Person : Linus Schumacher Contact Number : 0131 651 9514
Contact Email :

Do you want to conduct research in mathematical and computational biology, embedded in a world-leading centre for regenerative medicine?

We are seeking a postdoctoral research fellow/associate with computational and analytical skills and experience of mathematical modelling of biological systems. Applicants should have a PhD in a relevant subject or equivalent research experience.

You will develop a computational framework for statistical analysis and mathematical modelling of immune cell behaviour in wound response. We want to create the analysis software as an open-source resource, and use this to analyse new experimental data. We envision that the resulting toolset will be extensible to collaboration with multiple experimental systems and enable use by experimental researchers, and produce material for peer-reviewed publications.

The post is funded for up to 18 months, starting May 2019 (or as soon as possible thereafter) with a possibility to extend. interviews will take place in late April/early May (exact date tbc).