AMPHEUS Laboratory Scientist
Deadline of this Job:
24 September 2021
Within Zambia , Lusaka , South - Central Africa
Date Posted: Wednesday, August 25, 2021 , Base Salary: Not Disclosed
AMPHEUS LABORATORY SCIENTIST – ZAMBART CENTRAL LABORATORY
Zambart is a research institution known internationally for cutting edge applied and interdisciplinary research on urgent public health issues. Zambart’s mission is to provide evidence based research to influence policy. Zambart staff form an interdisciplinary team with a range of expertise including epidemiology, clinical science, social science, laboratory, operations research, health systems and services research, health policy analysis, health economics, health communication and counselling. Zambart’s head office is located at Ridgeway Campus, the University of Zambia.
Zambart is seeking to employ an ambitious and enterprising laboratory scientist to lead the laboratory team and to develop the scientific agenda of the laboratory at Zambart.
The successful candidate will not only have appropriate laboratory training but will demonstrate promise as an emerging scientific leader capable of inspiring a programme of work including but not limited to developing new studies, obtaining funding and writing scientific papers.
The role will initially be funded under the AMPHEUS project, in which Zambart (https://www.zambart.org.zm/ ) is collaborating with the Fraser Pathogen Dynamics Group at the Big Data Institute at the University of Oxford (https://www.bdi.ox.ac.uk/research/fraser-pathogen-dynamics-group ). This ambitious study aims to:
• Develop pathogen sequencing methods and build laboratory infrastructure to facilitate clinical HIV research and pathogen surveillance in Sub-Saharan Africa and a point-of-care sequencing platform for clinical evaluation of individuals living with HIV and other viral infections in Lusaka, Zambia
• Adapt existing virus sequencing methods to characterise whole RNA and DNA virus genomes from low-volume blood specimens. Specific innovations required include optimisations of sequencing sensitivity (read number per unit viral load), pathogen load quantification, whole-genome haplotyping, multi-pathogen sequencing and quality assurance to meet clinical standards.
The position will be based in Lusaka, Zambia and will require the post holder to lead the Zambart laboratory development and team to fulfil the project objectives.
• Zambian national or resident.
• PhD in molecular biology, microbiology, immunology, or related field or at a minimum master’s degree in this field at a recognized university. (NB it may be possible to complete a PhD in this field if the appropriate candidate does not have one)
• Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to train and enthuse individuals in the role and use of molecular biology and sequencing.
• Demonstrated evidence of promise as a research leader including participation in grant writing and dissemination of results.
• Experience in molecular biology techniques and sequencing methods.
• Ability to work as part of the AMPHEUS Project Team, most of whose members will be based in Oxford, UK. Willingness to travel for work within Zambia and outside.
• Excellent communication skills, including the ability to represent the research group at meetings, with demonstrated experience in presenting results at dissemination meetings including conferences and publications. Excellent written and spoken English are required
• Basic computational skills, including ability to run existing bioinformatic pipelines, file management, and interpret outputs.
• Experience using and maintaining laboratory information management systems (LIMS).
• Experience training laboratory personnel and supervising laboratory operations.
• Take direction from and report directly to the Zambart AMPHEUS PI.
• Develop and lead a team of laboratory scientists and technologists to run the AMPHEUS laboratory.
• Work with bioinformaticians and software developers with analytical and programming experience to develop a complete pipeline that includes protocols, systems and analytics for clinical result reporting, quality assurance and real-time molecular epidemiology.
• Collaborate with AMPHEUS team members in the preparation of scientific reports and journal articles and present papers and posters.
• Write SOPs, train and supervise personnel, and oversee day-to-day operations (e.g., testing, ordering supplies, routine maintenance, etc.) at the AMPHEUS Sequencing Facility at the Zambart Central Laboratory.
• Conduct and supervise sample processing, testing, and bio-banking according to Good Clinical Laboratory Practices (GCLP) to ensure high-quality results.
• Adhere to relevant biosafety requirements (e.g., specimen handling, waste disposal, etc.) to ensure safety of laboratory staff and the surrounding community.
• Maintain laboratory and equipment in optimal condition and arrange preventive maintenance, repairs, and updates as needed.
• Maintain meticulous electronic laboratory records.
• Represent the research group at external meetings/seminars, either with other members of the group or alone.
• Contribute ideas for the project direction and contribute ideas for new projects and new sources of grant income.
The initial contract will be for a period of 36 months (3 years) and an attractive package is being offered commensurate with education and experience.
Work Hours: 8
Experience in Months: 60
Level of Education: Postgraduate Degree
Job application procedure
Only applicants who meet the criteria for the above position should submit their application letters without attachments to [email protected] , OR bring in person or post the cover letter, CV and certificates to The Human Resource Manager, Zambart House, UNZA Ridgeway Campus, Off Nationalist Road, P.O. Box 50697, Lusaka, Zambia
Closing Date: 24th September 2021.
Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.