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Research Specialist, Evolutionary Cell Biology - McCutcheon Lab

Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Guadalupe, Arizona, US
Closing date
May 26, 2022

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Academic / Research
Conservation science
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time
Primary Work Address: Biodesign Institute, Tempe, AZ, 85287-7701

Current HHMI Employees, click here to apply via your Workday account.

We are currently seeking Research Specialist to join a dynamic team of researchers in the laboratory of Dr. John McCutcheon at Arizona State University. The lab studies uncultivatable bacteria that live inside of insect cells, focusing on how these long-term bacterial infections begin, how they work now, and how they are related to other organelles such as mitochondria and plastids. The lab uses techniques from genomics, microscopy, microbiology, cell biology, and biochemistry to study these systems. We are open to applicants with BS, MS, or PhD degrees with expertise in protein or organelle purification, cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography, mass spectrometry, cell culture infection assays, live-cell imaging, confocal or superresolution light microscopy, or other related techniques. However, an open mind and a willingness to try new and challenging experiments are the most important qualifications for this position.

The McCutcheon lab is a friendly, welcoming, and inclusive place. We believe that science is for everyone, and we do not and will not discriminate against people based on sexual orientation, race, gender identity, or religion (or lack of one). We simply seek a motivated and enthusiastic human. Our lab has generous space in the newest building of ASU's Biodesign Institute, where we are part of the interactive and collaborative Center for Mechanisms of Evolution. More information about the lab can be found on our website.


  • Manage projects and oversee sample analysis in ongoing collaborations.
  • Lead the exploration of techniques new to the lab.
  • Lead research projects (or parts) and work closely with other researchers within the lab to optimize results and troubleshoot experiments.
  • Serve as a mentor to junior lab members.
  • Discuss work with principal investigator and the rest of the team. Provide substantive intellectual input to experimental design and/or research directions.
  • Support the lab's commitment to teamwork and inclusivity.


  • Bachelor's Degree required
    • Graduate degree a plus but not required
  • Expertise in protein or organelle purification, cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography, cell culture infection assays, fluorescent microscopy, mass spectrometry, or other related techniques.
  • Excellent organizational skills.
  • Excellent communication skills (verbal and written), as well as strong interpersonal skills
  • Ability to work independently, as well as part of a team.
  • Knowledge of standard laboratory procedures/protocols, as well as a commitment to following safety procedures to maintain a safe work environment

Applicants should submit their curriculum vitae, a one-page statement on how their experience and interests relate to our work, and contact information for two or three references.

Physical Requirements

Remaining in a normal seated or standing position for extended periods of time; reaching and grasping by extending hand(s) or arm(s); dexterity to manipulate objects with fingers, for example using a keyboard; communication skills using the spoken word; ability to see and hear within normal parameters; ability to move about workspace. The position requires mobility, including the ability to move materials weighing up to several pounds (such as a laptop computer or tablet). Work may involve possible exposure to malodorous vapors, low dose radiation, contamination by toxic chemicals and acids and presence of carcinogenic substances.

Persons with disabilities may be able to perform the essential duties of this position with reasonable accommodation. Requests for reasonable accommodation will be evaluated on an individual basis.

Please Note:

This job description sets forth the job's principal duties, responsibilities, and requirements; it should not be construed as an exhaustive statement, however. Unless they begin with the word "may," the Essential Duties and Responsibilities described above are "essential functions" of the job, as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Compensation and Benefits

Our employees are compensated from a total rewards perspective in many ways for their contributions to our mission, including competitive pay, exceptional health benefits, retirement plans, time off, and a range of recognition and wellness programs. Visit our Benefits at HHMI site to learn more.

HHMI is an Equal Opportunity Employer

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