OPEN POSITIONS

Join the Jones!Lab

Pursue your career goals by contributing and building your scientific, engineering and computational skills as the newest member of our team! We are one of five inaugural research groups at the VU LSC - EMBL Partnership Institute, centered on developing novel genome editing technologies. Our group aims to discover and characterize broad classes of programmable enzymes – including CRISPR nucleases – with a special interest in uncovering their mechanisms of specificity.


In our group, you will develop and employ high-throughput biochemical methods to discover and characterize the next generation of genome engineering tools. We fuse deep sequencing, automation, classical biochemistry and bioinformatics through engineering and collaboration. We benefit from cutting-edge equipment and brilliant minds that span EMBL research institutes and the VU Life Sciences Center.

As a Jones!Lab member, you can expect colleagues that share your passion for research and team-based contributions to the life sciences community. You will build connections with international research teams, receive mentoring in scientific development and career advancement, and solve pressing biological problems with interdisciplinary strategies.

PHD STUDENT

CRISPR nucleases transformed our approaches medicine, diagnostics, agriculture and research. By programming a CRISPR nuclease with a guide RNA (gRNA), we direct it to cut a gene with the matching sequence, its target. Cellular enzymes repair these cuts, introducing changes to the sequence of the gene that prevent or alter the expression and activity of its gene product.

CRISPR nucleases tolerate small differences between the gRNA and DNA target sequences. These contribute to ‘off-target’ activity, where the nuclease cuts additional genes, causing unexpected (and sometimes dangerous) changes. The small differences also affect how the nuclease cuts DNA, producing DNA ends with different shapes and sequences. These changes to the DNA ends could alter how cells repair the cuts.

In my lab, you will investigate if and how gRNA-DNA sequence parity alters the repair outcomes of editing with CRISPR nucleases. This requires experience in bioinformatics, biochemistry and cell biology techniques. You will find candidates by computationally searching the cleavage profiles of different gRNA-DNA pairs across CRISPR nucleases, connecting their in vitro nuclease performance with their cellular repair outcomes. You will use this information to seek reproducible manipulations to gRNA sequences that genome engineers can apply to direct specific gene editing outcomes.

Eligible candidates must have a Master's degree, documented fluency in English, and practical experience programming in Python.

COMPUTATIONAL BIOLOGIST

We are seeking a computational biologist to help bring our team to the next level. This candidate should be a confident Python programmer, familiar with libraries like SciPy, NumPy, Matplotlib and BioPython. She or he will use and develop software that analyze DNA sequencing data in combination with biochemistry principles to understand how gene editing tools function.  A desire to understand and approach challenges in gene editing biology is more critical than expert knowledge of the field.


The candidate should have a Masters degree in a discipline such as computer science, bioinformatics, biochemistry or applied mathematics. A Bachelors degree with appropriate experience may also be acceptable. This opportunity is available as full- or part-time employment, or as part of a degree program.

If you would like to join us in doing great science, please email Stephen with your CV and a cover letter.

POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHER

The Jones!Lab seeks postdoctoral researchers to spearhead exciting projects in gene editing. Each will have a strong background in either molecular biology, biochemistry, biomedical engineering, bioinformatics or computer science. Successful applicants will:

  • demonstrate enthusiasm for using team-based approaches to pursue our research goals.

  • have a strong work ethic, evidenced through output from their prior training. 

  • have demonstrated Python programming skills.

  • train and learn from fellow lab members.

  • plan to apply for extramural support through Skłodowska-Curie Fellowships or similar programs.

If you are interested in joining our team, please email Stephen with your CV and a cover letter.