Postdoc position for precision immunology assay development

Organization
Laserson Lab @ Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Job Location
New York, NY 10029
Benefits

Full benefits, including health, dental, vision, etc. Subsidized housing available.

Job Description

The Laserson Lab develops high-throughput, data-intensive assays for studying the adaptive immune system. We use next-generation sequencing, large scale DNA synthesis, and protein display technologies to understand how the immune system interacts with its environment by measuring the specificities of antibodies and T cell receptors in parallel. Application areas include gut-immune interaction, personalized immunotherapy, and therapeutic antibody discovery.

The Job

You will be a founding member of the lab. Together with the PI, you will be responsible for defining your research plan and executing it. Some example projects we currently or plan to work on include:

  • The function of secretory IgA (sIgA). We will build and use phage display libraries to identify the specific antigen targets of secretory IgA. This will allow us to better understand the role of sIgA in regulating the gut microbiota and understanding dysbiosis (e.g., during inflammatory bowel disease). We will also use this technique to elucidate the role of sIgA in mediating antiviral immunity.

  • Autoantigen discovery. We are interested in identifying the culprit antigens in several autoimmune diseases that have autoantibodies with poorly characterized antigens, such as rheumatic heart disease, neuromyelitis optica, among others. We will screen the sera of patients using the human peptide PhIP-seq library.

  • Simultaneous measurement of antibodies with their antigens. We are developing methods for simultaneously sequencing paired heavy/light chains from B cells along with the corresponding antigen.

  • Measuring TCR peptide specificities. We are interested in developing methods for high-throughput measurement of the peptide specificities of a collection of T cells. For example, when giving cancer patients personalized vaccines, we want to be able to understand which particular epitopes are responsible for effective responses to the tumor cells.

We are most interested in the assay development, and will consider other areas of interest for studying the adaptive immune system. Because the lab is new, you will have the opportunity to help build out a new research lab and will also be instrumental in defining the lab culture. You can also assist in training/mentoring graduate students.

Requirements

We will be utilizing a variety of cutting-edge techniques, and a willingness to learn and experiment will be crucial. You should have a PhD or equivalent experience in a life sciences field. Most of our work ultimately depends on next-generation DNA sequencing, so comfort working with such data sets is important. We expect the research program to require proficiency in a variety of experimental techniques, including sample/library prep for sequencing, molecular cloning, tissue culture, antibody assays, and flow cytometry/FACS. Ideally, you will have experience with a protein display technology, such as phage display or yeast display, or experience in analyzing TCR-pMHC interactions.

 

How to Apply

Send an email to the PI introducing yourself and what kind of work you're interested in.

About Our Organization

The PI

Uri was born in Tel Aviv and grew up in Miami before studying Math and Biology during college at NYU. He entered the PhD program in the Math department at MIT, after which he joined George Church’s lab at Harvard to train in genomics technology development. Uri developed some of the first protocols and software for next-generation sequencing of the antibody repertoire. He also collaborated with Ben Larman to help develop the PhIP-seq assay for high- throughput antigen specificity. During graduate school, Uri cofounded Good Start Genetics, one of the first diagnostics companies to bring NGS to the clinic. After earning his PhD, Uri worked at Cloudera, which builds Hadoop infrastructure for big data. During this time, he became a core member of the ADAM team developing software for scaling genomics analyses to millions of samples. In 2016, Uri joined the genetics faculty at Mount Sinai.

About Mount Sinai

At the Icahn Institute and Department of Genetics and Genomic Sciences at Mount Sinai, our research and clinical teams work together to translate research insights to improve patient diagnostics and treatment. The Icahn Institute was founded in 2011 to help advance precision medicine with cutting-edge technologies, novel partnerships between the public and private sector, and world class computational and analytical resources. The Department of Genetics and Genomic Sciences conducts basic research, trains fellows, and educates the next generation of doctors and genetic counselors. We are the home of Mount Sinai’s state-of-the-art genetic testing lab and medical genetics clinic.

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