View Vacancy -- Research Specialist LMS 1906

Open Date
25/07/2022, 14:00
Close Date
18/09/2022, 23:55
MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences

The London Institute of Medical Sciences (LMS) is a Medical Research Council funded research institute at the Hammersmith Hospital campus (London W12) of Imperial College London, with around 400 biomedical researchers undertaking multidisciplinary and internationally-competitive science.

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MRC - 4
£32,005 - £35,143 plus London allowances (£3,727 & £1,402) per annum
Fixed Term
Full Time
2 Years (with the possibility of extension)

Overall purpose:

To work within the Developmental Epigenomics Group with Prof Juan M Vaquerizas at the London Institute of Medical Sciences. The Developmental Epigenomics Group aims to understand how the information encoded in DNA is accurately used by cells to perform the physiological functions that are required for each organism during the different phases of their life cycles. The access to this information is tightly regulated, and disruption or breakdown of these regulatory mechanisms are responsible for many developmental disorders and diseases such as cancer. We aim to uncover the functioning of some of these mechanisms, which, in turn, will help us understand the cause of the associated diseases. To do so, we employ high-throughput genomic techniques such as single-cell multiomics, RNA-seq, ChIP-seq, and Hi-C, to examine epigenetic features genome-wide in model organisms and in vitro systems. In particular, we have a strong interest in gametogenesis and early embryonic development, the role of chromatin organisation in human disease, and the epigenetic regulation of repetitive elements. For more information, visit

Main duties / key responsibilities:

  • Identify, establish and optimise new techniques that would be useful to the lab, and train other lab members in these techniques
  • To contribute to the scientific programme of the group by learning any necessary techniques and performing independent experiments (directed by the PI)
  • To accurately record and analyse the results of experiments
  • To take responsibility for Health & Safety training/induction of new group members
  • Ensure the smooth running of the laboratory by updating and maintaining laboratory documentation (such as SOPs, risk assessments, etc.), management of laboratory health and safety and maintenance of equipment (purchasing, servicing, stock control, delivery of goods etc)
  • Oversee the overall use of the laboratory to ensure that all laboratory users comply with systems of good practice and maintain a high level of housekeeping
  • To update lab databases and resources (e.g. lists of reagents, equipment, protocols, cells, risk assessments)
  • To contribute to lab-wide discussions on developments within the laboratory, particularly in the use of new techniques or new equipment
  • Active participation in training of other staff and students within the group
  • Conduct research as part of the group’s core program
  • To work both independently and on collaborative projects, with other members of the group as well as internal and external collaborators
  • Take an active part in the academic activities of the group including group meetings, group journal clubs, training and organisational aspects
  • To attend relevant workshops and conferences as necessary
  • Attend, complete and pass all relevant safety training courses and ensure all lab users have attended and passed all relevant safety courses

Working relationships:

  •  You will report to Prof Juanma Vaquerizas and will liaise with other lab members and members of other LMS groups

Education / Qualifications / Training required (will be assessed from the application form):


  • PhD (or equivalent) in genetics, developmental biology, molecular biology or a related discipline

Previous work experience required (will be assessed from application and at interview):


  • Proficiency in molecular and cell biology techniques and experience in functional genomics methodology (e.g. ChIP-seq, CUT&RUN, ATAC-seq, Hi-C, RNA-seq, or related techniques)
  • Excellent experimental skills and extensive experimental/bench work experience
  • Experience working with mammalian cells
  • Experience carrying out a scientific project to completion (i.e. publication)


  • Background in functional genomics, computational epigenomics, gene regulation, or developmental biology
  • Strong publication record
  • Experience of genome editing with CRISPR-Cas9
  • Previous experience in supervising and training other researchers (e.g. students)

Knowledge and experience (will be assessed from the application form and at the interview):


  • Knowledge of molecular biology and genomics
  • Creative approach to problem-solving
  • Excellent verbal communication skills and the ability to work effectively with researchers from different fields (computer scientists to experimental biologists) ranging from postgraduate students to professorial level
  • Practical experience with a broad range of laboratory equipment
  • Demonstrable knowledge of laboratory good practice and safety
  • Ability to organise own work with minimal supervision
  • Ability to prioritise own work in response to deadlines


  • Knowledge of eukaryotic gene regulation
  • Experience of laboratory management
  • Knowledge of SHE (Safety, Health, Environment) working practices and legislation for laboratories to include use of safety data sheets to develop local COSHH forms
  • Knowledge of a range of model organisms, such as Drosophila, zebrafish, Xenopus, and mouse

Personal skills/behaviours/qualities (will be assessed at the interview):


  • Keen interest in developing skills and experimental methods
  • High level of motivation and drive
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team
  • Ability and eagerness to learn new concepts and acquire new skills in biology quickly, and to seek novel and creative solutions to scientific problems
  • Willingness to share knowledge and skills with other members of the group on a daily basis
  • Discipline and regard for confidentiality and security at all times
  • Willingness to undertake any necessary training for the role


  • Willingness to occasionally work out of normal working hours (including weekends) if the requirements of the project demand

Applicants should submit CV with a brief cover letter describing their motivation for the post and how they fit the person specification, along with the names and contacts of two scientific references. Please do not send reference letters at this stage. Please quote reference number: LMS 1906

We reserve the right to close the vacancy when we are in receipt of sufficient applications. Should you wish to apply for this post you are advised to complete and submit your application form as soon as possible.

This role qualifies for endorsement by UKRI for a UK Global Talent Visa, for which the successful applicant is likely to be eligible to apply. Immigration costs for applicant (100% visa and 100% Health Surcharge) and immediate dependents (100% visa and 50% health surcharge when applying with main applicant) can be reclaimed from LMS after taking up the post (terms and conditions apply).

The MRC is a great place to work and progress your career, be it in scientific research or the support functions.The MRC is a unique working environment where our researchers are rewarded by world class innovation and collaboration opportunities that the MRC name brings. The MRC is an excellent place to develop yourself further and a range of training & development opportunities will be available to you, including professional registration with the Science Council.

Choosing to come to work at the MRC (part of UKRI) means that you will have access to a whole host of benefits from a defined benefit pension scheme and excellent holiday entitlement to access to employee shopping/travel discounts and salary sacrifice cycle to work scheme, as well as the chance to put the MRC and UKRI on your CV in the future.

Our success is dependent upon our ability to embrace diversity and draw on the skills, understanding and experience of all our people. We welcome applications from all sections of the community irrespective of gender, race, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability or age. As "Disability Confident" employers, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

We will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

This opportunity is closed to applications.