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Microbiome Postdoctoral Fellow
Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab in Laurel, Maryland
Date Posted October 20, 2020
Employment Type Full-time
Application Deadline Open until filled

Do you enjoy working with complex biological systems?


Are you searching for an opportunity to lead innovative work within the biological sciences to solve challenging problems for national security and human health?


If so, we’re looking for someone like you to join our team at APL. The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) is a national leader in scientific research and development. APL is focused on creating defining innovations that ensure our nation's preeminence in the 21st century. Located within the Research Exploratory Development Department, the Biological Sciences Group is at the forefront APL's mission to provide critical contributions to critical challenges. 


We are seeking a highly skilled and motivated Microbiome Postdoctoral Fellow to support existing work and lead the group in exciting, strategic directions. Current microbiome efforts in the group are focused on using endogenous and engineered microbial communities as tools to both understand and manipulate the environment and the host organism. Application spaces include agriculture and food security, marine environments and health and human performance. We are particularly interested in bringing on a team member with experience influencing and evaluating microbial community dynamics. 


Candidates should be curious, collaborative, and self-motivated. As a member of our team, you'll work across disciplines to leverage world class expertise developing innovative, game changing solutions to today’s problems. 


As a Microbiome Postdoctoral Fellow:


1.     Your primary responsibility will be to work with an interdisciplinary team to support existing efforts characterizing microbial communities, microbiome engineering, modeling microbiome dynamics and/or analyzing complex interactions between host and microbial populations for human health and national security applications. You will support study design, execution, and data analysis. (50%)

2.     You will lead research efforts by building diverse and high-performing teams, providing technical mentorship of staff, and promoting collaborative exchange of ideas. You will track progress to ensure milestones are met at the highest levels of quality and innovation and communicate key findings both internally across teams and externally to sponsors. (25%)

3.     You will provide leadership in development of new opportunities and support internal initiatives driving technical innovation and growth in areas relevant to APL sponsors and in alignment with group and department strategy, including preparing white papers and writing competitive proposals. (15%)

4.    You will lead reporting and communication of results to the APL community, program management, sponsors, and broader scientific community through presentations, peer-reviewed journal publications and technical meetings. (10%) 



Note: This job summary and listing of duties is for the purpose of describing the position and its essential functions at time of hire and may change over time. 

You meet our minimum qualifications for the job if you...


  • Possess a PhD in a Biological Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Computational Biology or relevant field (or will possess at the planned time of accepting this position.
  • Have demonstrated expertise in microbiome characterization and manipulation, or computational analysis of microbial population dynamics
  • Have proficiency in analysis and integration of diverse data modalities (e.g. transcriptomics, metagenomics)      
  • Possess strong communication and collaboration skills and are able to demonstrate the ability to lead and contribute to teams from any position 
  • Are able to obtain Secret level security clearance. If selected, you will be subject to a government security clearance investigation and must meet the requirements for access to classified information. Eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship.



You'll go above and beyond our minimum requirements if you...


  • Have prior experience with analysis of host/microbiome interactions
  • Have expertise in metabolic modeling
  • Have prior success in preparing and winning competitive proposals


Why work at APL?

The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) brings world-class expertise to our nation’s most critical defense, security, space and science challenges. While we are dedicated to solving complex challenges and pioneering new technologies, what makes us truly outstanding is our culture. We offer a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere where you can bring your authentic self to work, continue to grow, and build strong connections with inspiring teammates.

At APL, we celebrate our differences and encourage creativity and bold, new ideas. Our employees enjoy generous benefits, including a robust education assistance program, unparalleled retirement contributions, and a healthy work/life balance. APL’s campus is located in the Baltimore-Washington metro area. Learn more about our career opportunities at 


Additional Information
  • Primary Mission Area: Research & Exploratory Development
  • Requisition ID: 23334
  • Security Clearance Required on Start Date: Interim Secret
  • Final Security Clearance Required: Secret
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