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Assistant/Associate Project Scientist or Postdoctoral Scholar in Cornea Genetics

Employer
University of California Los Angeles
Location
Los Angeles, California
Salary
DOE
Closing date
31 Aug 2024

View more

Discipline
Life Science
Job Type
Researcher
Employment - Hours
Full time
Duration
Permanent
Qualification
PhD
Sector
Academia

A research position for a Postdoctoral Scholar or a Project Scientist is available in the Cornea Genetics Laboratory at the Stein Eye Institute on the University of California, Los Angeles campus. Candidates are expected to hold a Ph.D, be self-motivated, demonstrate a record of research achievement and have a strong interest in translational research that involves integrating clinical findings with basic science research.

The Cornea Genetics Laboratory focuses on identifying the genetic basis of the corneal dystrophies (inherited disorders of the cornea) and developing therapeutic approaches to treat the corneal dystrophies. The Laboratory employs an array of genetic analysis tools to identify causative mutations associated with inherited corneal disorders, and utilizes mouse and cell- based disease models to study the pathomechanisms via which the identified mutations lead to loss of corneal clarity, and thus loss of vision. The identification and elucidation of the genetic basis of the corneal dystrophies has led to Dr. Aldave and colleagues’ developing and testing molecular therapeutics approaches in these same cell-based and animal models. The Laboratory is also involved in the characterization and optimization of ex vivo expansion of human corneal endothelial cells, with the goal of transplanting the cells from one donor to multiple recipients. As it is estimated that worldwide only one donor cornea is available for every 70 that are needed, the use of expanded corneal endothelial cells to restore sight to individuals with corneal endothelial dysfunction, most commonly due to corneal endothelial dystrophies, will transform the current paradigm of one donor cornea restoring sight to only one recipient.

The Laboratory is currently conducting a pre-clinical study of SLC4A11 gene therapy for CHED, which is one of the eight gene therapy trials that is included in the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health Accelerating Medicines Partnership® Bespoke Gene Therapy Consortium (AMP® BGTC). This project is supported by a grant by the California Institute for Regeneration Medicine (CIRM) and is being performed in collaboration with coinvestigators at the University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University.

The candidate will work on AAV gene therapy projects using mouse models of corneal dystrophies. A background in working with mouse models of ocular diseases, knowledge regarding generating transgenic mouse models, experience in AAV gene therapy for ocular diseases, experience with mouse survival surgery and tissue/sera collection, knowledge regarding biodistribution assays and digital PCR, and familiarity with in vivo imaging of mouse ocular structures (e.g. optical coherence tomography and confocal scanning laser microscopy) are preferred skills, but are not required to apply. A background in immunology and AAV gene therapy-related immunoassay development are strongly preferred.

More information can be found at: https://www.uclahealth.org/eye/cornea-genetics.

Interested individuals who meet the above criteria may apply here:
https://apptrkr.com/5367919

Cultural North Star
The shared values of the DGSOM are expressed in the Cultural North Star, which was developed by members of our community and affirms our unswerving commitment to doing what’s right, making things better, and being kind. These are the standards to which we hold ourselves, and one another. Please read more about this important DGSOM program at https://medschool.ucla.edu/cultural-north-star.

COVID-19 Vaccination
As a University employee, you will be required to comply with all applicable University policies and/or collective bargaining agreements, as may be amended from time to time. Federal, state, or local government directives may impose additional requirements.

Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Statement
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, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see: UC Nondiscrimination and Affirmative Action Policy.

Anti-Racism Roadmap
The David Geffen School of Medicine Anti-racism roadmap is our co-created path to ensuring racial justice, equity, diversity and inclusion. We are committed to actively dismantling structural racism in our organization as described in more detail at: https://medschool.ucla.edu/diversity- anti-racism-roadmap

California Senate Bill 1162 – Pay Scale Disclosure
The posted UC salary scales set the minimum pay determined by rank and step at appointment.

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