Disciplinary Specialties of Research
• Computational Structural Biology
• Molecular Pharmacology
• Molecular Modeling
Description of the Position
The Kufareva lab (https://kufareva.ucsd.edu/) at the UCSD Skaggs School of Pharmacy (https://pharmacy.ucsd.edu/) is looking for a postdoctoral scholar interested in pursuing a career at the interface between computational and experimental biomedical sciences. This scholar will lead a project on computational structural modeling and molecular design for chemokine receptors.
Chemokines are small secreted proteins that guide the movement of immune and other cells in the human body, by binding and activating specific G protein-coupled receptors on the surface of these cells. The dysregulation of the receptor-chemokine system leads to abnormal cell migration and may lead to inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, cancer metastasis, tumor immunosuppression, and severe manifestations of responses to infections such as COVID-19. However, very little is known about the structure and dynamics of chemokine receptors or the molecular determinants of their interaction with chemokines or with intracellular effectors and regulators. Because they are extremely challenging targets for experimental structure determination, the role of computational structural modeling is tremendous.
The scholar will master and apply in silico approaches such as homology modeling, protein docking, virtual ligand screening, cheminformatics, molecular dynamics, bioinformatics and big data analyses to tackle the challenges of chemokine receptor signaling and inhibition. This work involves a tight collaboration with experimentalists working in the field of GPCR signaling, structural biology, and pharmacology. In addition to performing computational experiments, the postdoctoral scholar is expected to make regular presentations at internal and extended group meetings, and to write papers under the guidance of the mentor. They will work with the mentor to secure fellowships, and eventually apply for career awards on the way to gaining scientific independence.
The University of California employs about 5,963 postdoctoral scholars (approx. 1,200 at UCSD) who contribute to the academic community by enhancing the research and education programs of the university. The postdoctoral experience emphasizes scholarship and continued research training. UC’s postdoctoral scholars bring expertise and creativity that enrich the research environment for all members of the UC community, including graduate and undergraduate students. Appointment durations vary depending on the length of the research project and availability of funding. Total duration of an individual’s postdoctoral service may not exceed five years, including postdoctoral service at other institutions. The International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) is the exclusive representative of the postdoctoral scholars.
The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status.
• PhD in Biological Sciences or related, and an interest in learning and applying computational approaches to biomedical problems. Alternatively, PhD in Computer/Data Science or a related field, and an interest in learning cell biology and pharmacology.
• Commitment to quality, rigor, transparency, and reproducibility in scientific research.
• Basic familiarity with the process of computer scripting and a scripting language such as R or Python.
• First author publications from prior training period.
• Commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
• Good writing and presentation skills.
• Ability to effectively communicate in person, over videoconferencing platforms, and over email.
• Familiarity with a command line computer interface
• Familiarity with a molecular modeling package (e.g. Schrodinger, MOE, ICM, etc.)
• Familiarity with molecular dynamics software (e.g. GROMACS, Amber, etc.)
• Knowledge of an image processing software such as ImageJ
• Familiarity with pharmacological concentration response curves and the non-linear regression software such as GraphPad Prism
• Familiarity with basic lab techniques and instrumentation
• Basic understanding of mammalian signal transduction
• Experience with pharmacological assays
• Theoretical and/or practical knowledge of molecular cloning
• Experience with mammalian cell culture and transfection
Applicants who have their own funding (e.g. in the form of a fellowship or similar) are welcome and should elaborate in their cover letter.
Terms of Service
The initial appointment is for one year, with optional subsequent reappointments based on performance. Total term of postdoctoral service may not exceed five years, including postdoctoral service at other institutions.
Commensurate with qualifications and years of experience as a postdoc; based on published University of California pay scales.
HOW TO APPLY
Applications must include: (i) Curriculum Vitae, (ii) cover letter, and (iii) three professional references (contact info only), including the current or previous academic supervisor. Applications must be submitted directly to Dr. Irina Kufareva at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about this position, please email Dr. Irina Kufareva at email@example.com
Tagged as: Chemistry, Computer Science, Life Sciences
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