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Post Doctoral Fellow - Protein Biochemistry
Frederick National Laboratory in Frederick, Maryland
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Date Posted December 18, 2019
Employment Type Full-time
Application Deadline Open until filled


The Cancer Research Technology Program (CRTP) develops and implements emerging technology, cancer biology expertise and research capabilities to accomplish NCI research objectives. The CRTP is an outward-facing, multi-disciplinary hub purposed to enable the external cancer research community. A major focus of the CRTP is the NCI RAS Initiative with the goal to discover new therapeutic interventions against RAS-driven cancers. In addition, the CRTP hosts the Nanotechnology Characterization Laboratory (NCL) which performs and standardizes preclinical efficacy and toxicity testing of nanoparticles intended for cancer therapeutics and diagnostics, and the Antibody Characterization Lab (ACL) which characterizes monoclonal antibodies or other renewable affinity binding reagents for use in cancer related research. The NCI RAS Initiative is a multi-disciplinary research team with the two-fold mission of exploring the biology of RAS proteins at the plasma membrane and developing new therapeutic candidates to target RAS-driven cancers. Mutations in the RAS gene and RAS pathway are also responsible for a number of human diseases known as RASopathies with varying phenotypes and which currently have no effective treatments. The postdoctoral fellow will investigate the product of the NF1 gene, Neurofibromin, which serves as the major GTPase-activating protein for RAS in human cells. Previous work in our group has identified potential structural features that suggest possible ways in which mutations of NF1 could lead to defects in RAS signaling, and additional biochemical, biophysical, and structural biology efforts are underway to explore the complex nature of this protein’s folding and activity.


The post-doctoral fellow will design and execute a research plan to study the Neurofibromin protein utilizing the cutting-edge technologies available within the Frederick National Lab. These technologies include but are not limited to protein biochemistry and biophysics, X-ray crystallography, cryo-electron microscopy, single-molecule imaging, and a suite of biochemical and cell-based assays for drug discovery. Specifically, the fellow will

  • Independently design and carry out experimental research focused on understanding the Neurofibromin protein and its interacting partners

  • Carry out biochemical, biophysical, and structural work in collaboration with other RAS Initiative personnel

  • Provide timely updates of project progress to supervisor and other staff in both informal and formal reports

  • Maintain detailed records of all laboratory processes and procedures for quality assurance purposes


  • Possession of a doctoral degree in biochemistry, biophysics, or structural biology from an accredited college/university according to the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Foreign degrees must be evaluated for U.S. equivalency.

  • No experience required beyond the doctorate degree

  • Ability to design and conduct experiments and evaluate results independently

  • High level of proficiency in protein biochemistry, biophysics, and/or structural biology

  • Demonstrated ability to work in a team environment in pursuit of specific research goals and objectives

  • Must be able to obtain and maintain a security clearance


  • Experience with small GTPases or RAS-related effector proteins

  • Experience in protein-protein interactions

  • Knowledge of protein-related mass spectrometry techniques

  • Ability to handle multiple scientific projects with a high degree of accuracy

  • Experience in protein production, especially using insect-based expression systems

  • Experience in cell-based assays including Western blots and ELISAs


  • Candidate will be working with or have the potential for exposure to infectious material(s) or Other Potentially Infectious Materials (OPIM), requiring medical clearance and immunization in accordance with protocol requirements

  • Candidate will be working with or have the potential for exposure to Vaccinia virus, requiring medical clearance and immunizations in accordance with protocol requirements

Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) | Minority/Female/Disabled/Veteran (M/F/D/V) | Drug Free Workplace (DFW)

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