Project Scientist in Chemical Engineerng
University of California Davis Department of Chemical Engineering
United States

Project Scientist in the McDonald/Nandi Lab, Dept. Chemical Eng.

Job #JPF03499

Recruitment Period

Open date: April 24th, 2020

Next review date: Monday, May 25, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)

Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Tuesday, Jun 30, 2020 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)

Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


A research position for a Project Scientist is immediately available at the McDonald-Nandi Laboratory (http://mcdonald-, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of California, Davis to work on the projects that need to transgenically/transiently express, measure, and characterize pharmaceutical proteins in lettuce and Nicotiana benthamiana. The successful candidate should have outstanding and appropriate research experience and should provide evidence of effective and innovative research in the areas listed below. The duration of this position is initially for one year and extendable depending on performance and availability of funding.

Specific tasks include but are not limited to:

• Grow (preferably hydroponically) and maintain healthy lettuce and Nicotiana benthamiana plants.
• Perform genetic infiltration and bombardment of target genes to produce both transgenic plants and transient expression in plants/leaves. Design of experiments to optimize speed of production, quantitative analyses and quality of recombinant proteins made in plants.
• Grow selected transgenic lettuce lines expressing target proteins both in greenhouse and controlled environmental facilities.
• Perform appropriate assays (ELISA, Western blots, and activity) to measure specific productivity of target recombinant proteins.
• Generate a sufficient amount of viable seeds and leaves for purification and further characterization of the target recombinant proteins in crude extract or after purification (e.g. SDS-PAGE, Western, ELISA, amino acid sequence, activity assay, CD analysis, etc.).
• Optimization of extraction and purification (>95%) of target molecules using centrifugation, TFF and AKTA systems and standardization of the protocols for scalability.
• Supervise undergraduate and graduate students working on related projects in the laboratory.
• Interface with collaborators within the university and outside of the university to further research objectives.
• Prepare monthly research update presentations, drafts of journal publications, maintain laboratory notebooks and data, identify related research and fellowship funding opportunities, contribute to proposals, present research findings at conferences and internal meetings.

Required qualification and skill:

Candidates must have a Ph.D. degree in Biochemical/Chemical engineering, Molecular Biotechnology, Plant Biotechnology, or other related disciplines with skills in lettuce plant growth, protein purification, and characterization for the above-mentioned tasks. Capable of designing and conducting experiments independently, novel hypothesis testing, troubleshooting, data analyses, presentation and interpretation with excellent oral and written communication skills as well as teamwork and lab safety and biosafety skills. The selected researcher also expected to participate in seminars, weekly lab meetings, preparation of presentations, posters, reports, and publications. UC Davis hold all rights for patenting or publishing any research data or outcomes and the researcher must adhere to all confidentiality, maintenance and archiving of lab data and records, lab safety, biological use authorization, and laboratory-specific requirements.

It is expected that the researcher will work under the direction of Professors Somen Nandi and Karen McDonald, and in collaboration with all members of McDonald-Nandi lab group.

Job location

Davis, California

Learn More

More information about this recruitment:


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter
  • Statement of Research (Optional)
  • Statement of Teaching (Optional)
  • Statement of Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion documented in the application file will be used to evaluate applicants. Visit for guidelines about writing a statement and why one is requested.
Reference requirements
  • 2-3 required (contact information only)

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