Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Jobs

Job Information

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory JBEI Post Doc Research Associate - Fungal Genetic Engineering in EMERYVILLE, California

Organization and Job ID

Job ID: 310937

Directorate: Energy and Environment

Division: Energy Processes and Materials

Group: Chemical and Biological Processing

Job Description

We are seeking an independent fungal genetic engineer to design genetic platforms for the expression of heterologous enzymes, especially metalloenzymes involved in lignin degradation, such as, peroxidases, laccases, etc. The candidate will join the Fungal Biotechnology team within the interdisciplinary Deconstruction Division of JBEI that is focused on performing fundamental research and development on fungal protein expression systems, specifically Aspergillus niger . Such fungi are amenable to industrial-scale production of enzymes relevant to deconstructing plant biomass for biofuel production. Team members experienced in developing and applying genetic tools in Aspergillus niger will be available to teach techniques applicable to this species and other fungi. The candidate will work with others to utilize advanced capabilities such as transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics to study the engineered fungal strains that he/she produces, and will also work with a metabolic modeler on the team to understand that data in a genome scale context and identify further gene candidates for engineering.

The candidate will have opportunities to collaborate with a large team of leading scientists and engineers in a state-of-the-art facility within the Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI). The principal interactions are with the Deconstruction Division that is developing advanced plant biomass deconstruction technologies for production of sugars and lignin components for

downstream production of biofuels and bioproducts (commodity chemicals). The candidate will also work with members of other teams within the Deconstruction and Technologies Divisions that generate lignin feedstocks, develop and implement enzyme kinetic assays, characterize protein structures, etc.

The candidate will have the opportunity to gain exposure to a variety of disciplines through collaborative work on the whole process from biomass to biofuels. Developing your network will occur via presentations at conferences and meetings, publishing results in top-tier journals, and direct interactions with scientists and engineers from national laboratories, universities and industries in the hotbed of biotechnology and synthetic biology in the United States, the San Francisco Bay Area.

Minimum Qualifications

Candidates must have received a PhD within the past five years (60 months) or within the next 8 months from an accredited college or university.

Preferred Qualifications

Experience with genetic engineering of microorganisms, filamentous fungi or yeasts vastly preferred, including building expression and deletion constructs, transformation, DNA and RNA purification, and utilizing genomics and transcriptomics data.

Ability to design and conduct genetic engineering and statistically robust fungal culture experiments, which will be focused on improving heterologous expression of lignin degrading enzymes in fungi and understanding the fundamental scientific principles underlying that process.

Preference for enzymology experience that may include quantitative enzyme assays, statistical analysis of data, protein purification and familiarity with proteomics data analysis.

Perform research in a collaborative manner in the context of processes upstream and downstream of enzymatic biomass deconstruction, including pretreatment of plant feedstocks, enzymatic digestion of pretreated biomass and biological conversion of biomass-derived sugars and aromatics.

Maintain an accurate and detailed laboratory notebook (e-notebooks will be used) of all work performed and submit this information into an electronic database. Ensure that others can duplicate results.

Contribute to a safe, respectful and considerate working environment.

Periodically provide written reports and give oral presentations to discuss results and issues.

PhD/DSc in fungal genetics, molecular biology, genetic engineering, biochemistry, biochemical engineering or related discipline.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Battelle Memorial Institute (BMI) at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer and supports diversity in the workplace. All employment decisions are made without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, marital or family status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or genetic information. All BMI staff must be able to demonstrate the legal right to work in the United States. BMI is an E-Verify employer. Learn more at

Please be aware that the Department of Energy (DOE) prohibits DOE employees and contractors from participation in certain foreign government talent recruitment programs. If you are offered a position at PNNL and are currently a participant in a foreign government talent recruitment program you will be required to disclose this information before your first day of employment.

Directorate: Energy & Environment

Job Category: Post-Graduates and Post-Docs

Group: Chemical & Bio Processing

Opening Date: 2020-06-15

Closing Date: 2020-07-13