Postdoc Position in Agri-science Chemical Biology

A new postdoctoral fellowship position is available at Imperial College London. Applicants should apply before September 22, 2019.

We are seeking to appoint a research associate who will be embedded within the Department of Chemistry/Institute of Chemical Biology and more particularly the Barter research group, and will be primarily based in the new state of the art Molecular Sciences Research Hub.

Imagine the headline in 30 years time - "Crop yields double - food for all!". The Barter research group is interested in looking at how physical sciences/chemical biology could impact upon this challenge. We believe that Photosynthesis could provide an answer, as despite being one of the most important processes on the earth, photosynthesis is surprisingly inefficient. One of the main culprits being an enzyme called Rubisco, involved in the capture of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

The research undertaken by this PDRA will focus upon an investigation of these inefficiencies, and moreover developing mechanisms to overcome them. The research portfolio will include growing plant and green algae material, protein extraction, purification and characterisation, as well as activity assays to probe photosynthesis and particularly Rubisco activity under a variety of perturbation conditions. An investigation of protein - protein interactions with Rubisco will also be undertaken.

Furthermore you will undertake the kinetic analysis of a suite of chemical tools, namely enzyme mimetics, that could improve Rubisco's efficiency. The outcomes of this research have the potential to revolutionise the agri-science sector by developing tools that could increase crop yields and overcome the inefficiency of the carbon fixating step of photosynthesis.

As a Research Associate within the Barter group, you will oversee and guide PhD, MRes and UG students within the Barter group, as well as assisting with the project management of two networks; an international network called Agri-net, and the Imperial College network called The Agri Futures Lab, both of which bring together scientists, industry partners and policy makers, to work together to impact upon the shared challenge of global food security.

Throughout this post you will be expected to take initiatives in the planning of your research, as well as help to direct the work of small research teams within the Barter group, including undergraduate and postgraduate students. This means that you must be able to prioritise tasks within agreed work schedule.

You will also be expected to be able to identify and develop suitable techniques and apparatus, for the collection and analysis of data, as well as acquire and interpret your research data and results ensuring their validity, reproducibility and reliability at all times.

It will be key that you are able to maintain accurate and complete records of all your findings and to produce regular internal and external reports. You should be able to produce PowerPoint presentations for oral and poster formats for presentations to colleagues as well as at conferences.

You will be expected to draft publications and prepare them for submission to refereed journals, as well as to contribute to writing bids for research grants.

You will help with the supervision of practical work and training of students working within the Barter group.

You will undertake appropriate administrative tasks and project management associated with the Barter Research group, the international network called Agri-net, and the Imperial College network called The Agri Futures Lab.

There will be opportunities to attend relevant training, workshops and conferences as appropriate, and to develop contacts and research collaborations within the College and the wider research community. During these interactions it is expected that you will promote the reputation of the Group, the Department and the College.

If you are interested in finding more about this exciting PDRA position in Agri-science Chemical Biology, please don't hesitate to contact Dr Laura Barter,

The College is a proud signatory to the San-Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), which means that in hiring and promotion decisions, we evaluate applicants on the quality of their work, not the journal impact factor where it is published.For more information, see

The College believes that the use of animals in research is vital to improve human and animal health and welfare. Animals may only be used in research programmes where their use is shown to be necessary for developing new treatments and making medical advances. Imperial is committed to ensuring that, in cases where this research is deemed essential, all animals in the College's care are treated with full respect, and that all staff involved with this work show due consideration at every level.

Deadline: September 22, 2019
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