The Institute for International Crop Improvement (IICI) at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is recruiting for a highly motivated individual to join a team dedicated to improving food security crops for smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. This position as a full-time Research Associate involves developing and characterizing genetically engineered, and genome edited crop varieties with improved disease and pest resistance traits. The incumbent will be responsible for developing and adapting new plant transformation methods, undertaking various molecular and physicochemical analyses, and assisting in compiling, analyzing, and interpreting results. The Research Associate will also serve as a resource to others, including visiting scientists, in the development and implementation of molecular diagnostic methods. For more information, visit our webpage.
Developing plant genetic transformation pipelines for food security crops relevant to IICIs target geographies
Propagate plants in tissue culture, growth chambers, and the greenhouse, including field planting and after care as required
Molecular-genetic analyses of genetically engineered and genome edited plant lines, including DNA/RNA isolation and various PCR methods
Collecting plant morphological and agronomic data, and conducting trait efficacy studies
Undertakes training of visiting scientists in molecular diagnostics techniques (e.g., PCR, lateral flow dipstick, ELISA, etc.)
Coordinates logistics around shipping, inventorying and managing permit conditions for the movement and storage of regulated plant materials
Other duties as assigned
Required knowledge, skills, and abilities:
Previous laboratory experience is required, including experience in molecular biology techniques (DNA/RNA extraction, PCR, Southern hybridization, plasmid vector construction) and protein analytical methods (ELISA, western immunoblotting)
Strong record keeping and organizational skills are essential
Able to organize, multitask their time efficiently and work both independently and collaboratively within a multidisciplinary and interactive research environment
Effective communication skills
Experience in data analysis and presentation
Strong problem solving and critical thinking skills
A strong interest in participating in new technology development and striving for technical excellence through collaboration, self-improvement, and an open mind
Must have authorization to work in the United States without sponsorship
Live the Danforth Center values: Collaboration, Diversity & Inclusion, Innovation, Integrity & Respect, Environmental Sustainability, and Stewardship
Bachelors or Masters degree in plant molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry, microbiology, chemistry or a related field with at least six (B.Sc.) or three (M.Sc.) years of relevant laboratory experience.
Cover letter clearly describing previous background and experience in a research setting
Contact information for three (3) professional references
About the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center:
Founded in 1998, the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is an independent, nonprofit organization with a mission to improve the human condition through plant science. Our focus is scientific research at the nexus of food, energy, and the environment to improve the productivity and sustainability of agriculture. We assemble interactive teams of scientists and develop unique platforms to discover underlying principles about how plants work. We then convert that knowledge into useful crops and products, and partner with organizations that are best positioned to solve problems where they exist around the world. The Centers work is funded through competitive grants from many sources, including the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Energy, National Science Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and from charitable contributions from individuals, companies, and foundations.
The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is proudly an equal employment opportunity employer. Employment decisions at the Danforth Center are based on merit, qualifications, and abilities. It is our policy that the Danforth Center does not discriminate in employment opportunities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or national origin and status as protected veterans or individuals with disabilities. As a federal contractor, the Danforth Center is required to comply with the 2021 Executive Order mandating full vaccination status of employees by December 8, 2021 unless the employee is legally entitled to an accommodation due to physical disability or sincerely held religious belief. If you need a reasonable accommodation to access the information provided on this web site, please contact Human Resources, at 314-587-1033 for further assistance.
The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri is a not-for-profit research institute. Scientists at the Center are engaged in research that strives to enhance the nutritional content of plants, increase agricultural production to create a sustainable food supply, reduce the use of pesticides and fertilizer, develop new and sustainable biofuels, and generate scientific ideas and technologies that will contribute to the economic growth of the St. Louis region. The Danforth Center currently employs nearly 200 individuals. Of these, two-thirds are scientists / scientific staff and approximately 90 hold PhDs. The Danforth Center has a strong international presence and commitment. Scientists from more than 20 different countries work at the Danforth Center and the Center has developed collaborations with educational and research institutes in Africa, China and India.