Research Specialist - Doudna Lab

Berkeley, California
Feb 19, 2021
Mar 21, 2021
Position Type
Full Time
Mid Level

Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) is an independent, ever-evolving philanthropy that supports basic biomedical scientists and educators with the potential for transformative impact. We make long-term investments in people, not just projects, because we believe in the power of individuals to make breakthroughs over time. HHMI scientists have radically advanced the understanding of cells, the brain, the immune system, the development of organs, and how to treat many diseases. Founded in 1953 by aviator and industrialist Howard R. Hughes, HHMI is headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, and employs more than 2,500 people across the U.S.


At HHMI, you are not just an employee – you are a part of a creative and talented team with colleagues whose expertise ranges from biomedical research to investment management, from information technology to law. We encourage collaborative and results-driven working styles and offer an adaptable environment where employees can do their best work. As HHMI scientists continue to push boundaries in laboratories and classrooms, you can be sure that your contributions while working at HHMI are making a difference.


We are currently looking for a talented, self-motivated Research Specialist for an important role working in the laboratory of Dr. Jennifer Doudna at the University of California, Berkeley in Berkeley, CA. The Doudna lab pursues mechanistic understanding of fundamental biological processes involving RNA molecules. Research in the lab is currently focused on three major areas: bacterial immunity via the CRISPR system, applications of CRISPR-based tools, and the translation of therapeutic genome editing. They utilize diverse techniques including X-ray crystallography, high-throughput sequencing, biochemistry, molecular biology, and cell culture. For more information about the Doudna lab, please visit


The chosen candidate will conduct and coordinate the testing of genome editing-based therapeutics in mice. They will contribute intellectually and technically to the design of animal-based experiments for in vivo CRISPR/Cas9 treatment platforms. This includes development of methods to deliver CRISPR systems, molecular and cellular analysis of efficacy and safety of treatments, and animal behavioral characterization during treatment. The ideal candidate is an organized, professional scientist with great leadership and communication skills who enjoys working with mice as a model organism, managing and assisting with multiple projects, taking initiative on process improvement efforts, and contributing to a collaborative research environment.


Essential Duties:

●       Manage and oversee all operations of the lab’s mouse colony including basic animal husbandry, genotyping of mice, managing logistical amendments to animal use protocols, and helping to ensure operational budget for the colony stays balanced.

●       Perform precise surgeries and injections.

●       Perform molecular (flow cytometry, sequencing, Western blotting) and histological analyses of tissue following treatment.

●       Conduct animal behavioral assays.

●       Maintain sufficient inventory of supplies and reagents for performance of experiments.

●       Collect, analyze and present data during regular lab team meetings.

●       Assist with compliance paperwork.




●       A minimum of a master’s degree in molecular biology, cell biology, or a closely related field is required. A Ph.D. is preferred.



●       A minimum of three years of experience in an academic laboratory setting is required.

●       Experience with mouse models of genetic disease is required and experience working with humanized mice is highly desired.

●       Experience performing small animal surgery and injections is required.

●       Significant experience with mouse handling, coordinating breeding strategies, and genotyping transgenic mice is required.

●       Experience with blood sampling is required.

●       Experience with stereotaxic surgery for compound injection/cannula implantation is preferred.

●       Experience with intraosseous (IO) infusion is preferred.


Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

●       Skilled in histological analysis of tissue including immunohistochemistry.

●       Skilled in confocal microscopy techniques.

●       Skilled in administering anesthesia/analgesia to small animals.

●       Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

●       Excellent organizational, time management, and project management skills.

●       Excellent attention to detail with highly accurate work product.

●       Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook).

●       Ability to be adaptable to accommodate shifting priorities and meet deadlines.

●       Ability to identify areas of improvement within current processes to increase efficiency.

●       Ability to collaborate effectively with team members.


Application Instructions:

●       Please include your CV, a cover letter, and contact information for three professional references as part of your application.


HHMI is an Equal Opportunity Employer