Research Technician - Cancer and Genomic Sciences - 56013 - Band 500

Jul 04, 2019
Jul 18, 2019
Contract Type
Full Time
Job Type
Position Details

Cancer and Genomic Sciences

Location: University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham UK

Full time starting salary is normally in the range £22,722 to £24,411, with potential progression once in post to £28,259

Band 500

Full Time FTC for 4 Years

Closing date: 17th July 2019

Job Summary

The Institute of Cancer & Genomic Sciences is one of the leading cancer research institutions in the UK with an international reputation, excellent facilities and an active research atmosphere. The post holder will provide technical support to the big, successful and well-funded research groups led by Professors Constanze Bonifer and Peter Cockerill. The main focus of their work is on the molecular basis of blood cell differentiation in the normal and leukæmic context. This includes working with primary mouse cells, the differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells to generate blood cell precursors in vitro , as well as molecular biology work. The post holder will also be responsible for the smooth running of the laboratory and will interact with postdoctoral fellows and students in the group.

Main Duties

Research - 75%


• Liaising closely with Principal Investigators to conduct experiments whilst working with minimal supervision on a day-to-day basis. Able to demonstrate good judgement in planning and carrying out research work.

• Contributing to a successful programme of investigation.

• Contributing to the generation of independent and original chromatin and hæmopoiesis research.

• Conduction experiments and recording data with a high level of accuracy

• Generating laboratory data suitable for publication

• Attending scientific meetings and journal clubs.

• Evaluating methods and techniques used and results obtained by other researchers and to relate such evaluations appropriately to own work.

• Trouble shooting, modifying experiments when required and development of new experimental approaches and techniques in light of new research findings to meet research targets.

• Maintaining accurate and up-to-date laboratory and other records also employing Excel and Word processing programs

• Maintaining stocks and preparing inventories of cell lines and other materials as required

• Updating and maintaining database of cell lines and plasmids belonging to the research group

Skills/techniques to be used in discharging those duties

• Cell culture (cell lines, mouse/human primary cells and mouse/human embryonic stem cells). In particular, ES cell culture and differentiation.

• Cell purification including leukæmic blast purification.

• Cell transfection assays.

• Flow cytometry.

• Cytotoxicity assays.

• Immunohistochemistry.

• DNaseI-treatment of cells.

• Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays.

• Molecular cloning techniques.

• Western blotting.

• RNA- and DNA purification from mammalian cells and bacteria.

• mRNA isolation.

• Real-Time PCR including gene expression analysis.

• ChIP assays/ChIP-sequencing.

• Reporter gene assays.

• Preparing samples for Illumina high-throughput sequencing and interacting with technical personnel running the facility.

• Ability to deal with varied tasks under pressure.

• Ability to work effectively as a member of a team within a research group

• Effective communication, interpersonal and organisational skills.

• Effective word processing, spreadsheet and database skills.


• Enabling staff and students, working within the area of responsibility, to comply with all basic University / College Health & Safety policies This will include compliance by all staff with current rules governing work with COSHH, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), biological samples, human tissue, radioactive materials and schedule 5 toxins etc. Ensure all required assessments are in place approved and up to date.

• Maintaining records both paper and computer based as appropriate.

• Carrying out regular maintenance processes such as flushing eye wash stations as appropriate and ensuring records are maintained.

• Reporting any breaches or non-compliance with H&S procedures to the PI, Technical Manager, Laboratory Manager or College Safety Adviser.

• Upholding the correct waste disposal stream as governed by College and local policy for laboratory, recycled and general waste

• Adopt a proactive attitude to assisting with and implementing carbon reduction and energy saving measures


The post holder will assist with the daily administration and organisation of the work area. These duties include:

• Maintaining stocks of consumables, if necessary, creating purchase order requisitions using the University Core system

• Receipt and correct storage of consumables and chemical reagents.

• Ensuring that the facilities are maintained in a clean, functional and safe condition, reporting any problems through the appropriate channels.

• Ensuring the best use of equipment through booking systems, if appropriate

• Reporting any problems with equipment or services to the line manager as appropriate.

• Any other duties commensurate with the grade and skill base of the post holder as directed by either the Principal Investigator for research based activities or the Technical Managers for non research based activities


• In collaboration with the Laboratory Manager or supervisor the post holder will take an active role in the training and mentoring process for junior or newly appointed staff/students

• To actively engage in the Personal Development Process

• To contribute at a level appropriate with the grade, to internal and external audit procedures, and to regulatory inspections.

• Assist Technical Managers and/or Laboratory Managers in identifying and tracking items held on the University asset register

Knowledge, Skills, Qualifications and Experience Required

• Extensive relevant experience, equivalent professional qualification or degree in an appropriate subject

• GCSE (A*- C) or equivalent in mathematics

• In-depth practical knowledge of technical and scientific methods stated above and Good Laboratory Practice gained through extensive experience and formal qualification

• Extensive experience of similar laboratory based work

• Positive service attitude and shows courtesy in dealing with others

• Ability to organise and manage own work load and demonstrate flexibility in terms of work practices/requirements

• Ability to work under minimal supervision but function as part of a team

• Knowledge of Animals Scientific Procedures Act (1986)

• Knowledge of Human Tissue Act (2004)

• Knowledge of current relevant H&S policies

• Proficiency in commonly used software packages

• Willingness to work towards professional registration