Postdoctoral Associate

Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute

Sanford Burnham Prebys is a preeminent, independent biomedical research institute dedicated to understanding human biology and disease, and advancing scientific discoveries to profoundly impact human health. 

The duties and responsibilities contained in the job description are intended to be examples of the accountabilities for which the person in the position will demonstrate competency through performance. The job description is not intended to be an all-inclusive list. Duties and responsibilities are subject to change and other duties may be assigned as necessary.

Postdoctoral Associate 

A Postdoctoral Associate position is available in the Emerling lab ( to study lipid signaling and metabolism in cancer. 

The Emerling Lab focuses on understanding key lipid signaling and metabolic pathways involved in the regulation of cellular function and growth under pathological conditions such as cancer. Our research focus centers around dissecting the roles of lipid kinases in cancer as well as targeting these enzymes for cancer therapy. Currently, we are developing small-molecule inhibitors to target difficult-to-treat cancers like triple-negative breast cancer, high-grade sarcomas, and pancreatic cancer.

We are seeking a highly motivated, independent, and career-oriented candidate with research expertise in cell biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, and cancer biology. We prefer candidates who are about to graduate with PhD or MD/PhD degree or have graduated within the last 12 months. A track record of excellent first author publication(s) is required.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Independently design and perform experiments and procedures
  • Demonstrate ability to adapt methods according to project priorities
  • Provide independent experimental design and planning
  • Be able to analyze and interpret data from different sources and draw relevant conclusions
  • Be able to present results and accurately document experiments
  • Contribute to the writing of reports and manuscripts
  • Work collaboratively across lab functions
  • Provides guidance to lab staff to execute projects within allotted budget and timelines
  • Ensures lab procedures comply with high-quality standards
  • Develops research reports, presents to management for review, and recommends improvements to lab procedures
  • Develops and maintains lab procedures, experimental protocols, and work instruction
  • Anticipates needs of the lab and prepares accordingly (orders supplies, maintains inventory, considers budget implications, and coordinates equipment use with other labs
  • Troubleshoots problems and recommends solutions to technical problems of complex scope
  • Participates in research projects, including providing interpretations and analysis of result
  • Prepares and delivers professional scientific presentations
  • Trains subordinate lab personnel in the correct use and application of lab equipment and procedures
  • Maintains laboratory equipment in compliance with regulations and operational need
  • Ensures lab employees follow industry standards, and safety regulations, and Institute lab policies and practices
  • Plans and schedules work activities to ensure adequate space, use of equipment, and coordination with other project activities within the lab
  • Works with Principal Investigators and Human Resources to resolve laboratory and personnel challenges
  • Oversees personnel and conducts daily tasks of a full-time technician in proper laboratory procedures and safety

Education and/or Experience:

  • Ph.D. or MD/Ph.D. in a biological science
  • Minimum one first author publication

Knowledge, Skills and/or Abilities:

  • Proficiency in the molecular analysis of human cells
  • Proficiency in current microscopy, cell biology, and biochemistry techniques and analysis
  • Understanding of signaling pathways, metabolism, and cancer biology
  • Work independently as well as in a team environment
  • Be responsible and have strong time management skills
  • Able to analyze and resolve issues of moderate complexity
  • Possess strong attention to detail and organizational skills
  • Demonstrate professional communication and interpersonal skills
  • Professional proficiency in Microsoft Office
  • Embody the Institute’s core values of Commitment, Collaboration, Communication, Community, and Compassion
  • Vaccination Requirement: Required.

Supervisory Responsibilities:
Yes, this position oversees other individuals


The expected hiring range for this position is $64,480.00 to $70,000.00 per year, commensurate with experience.

Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer – M/F/Veteran/Disability – committed to the hiring, advancement and fair treatment of all individuals.

Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute is an Equal Opportunity employer – M/F/Veteran/Disability – committed to the hiring, advancement and fair treatment of all individuals. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, protected veteran status, or any other protected status as designated by federal, state or local law. For additional information about your rights as an applicant, click HERE.

Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information.

Tagged as: #postdoc #postdoctoral #phd #cancer #research

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