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Scientist - Immunology

The TB Vaccine Evaluation Group at the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) at Porton Down uses the non-human primate (NHP) model to assess the safety, efficacy and immunogenicity of a range of novel vaccines and therapeutics to protect against and treat Tuberculosis, a disease which was responsible for ~1.4 million deaths in 2019.
You will be involved in the analysis of blood samples to measure the mycobacteria-specific cellular immune response at ACDP Containment Levels 2 & 3 using a range of advanced immunoassays including; the ELISPOT assay, flow cytometry to analyse immunological memory and functional markers, polyfunctional T-cell analysis and multiplex bead array technology. You will be also be involved in identifying other opportunities to optimize new methods and technologies for use with archived samples.
You will also be responsible for supervising the ACDP2 & 3 laboratory; maintaining a safe working environment, assessing risks and organizing consumable provisions. There will also be some supervision of junior members of staff. 
The successful applicants will be educated to degree level in a relevant subject or equivalent level of experience of working at a similar level in a specialist area. Education to MSc or PhD in an appropriate biological science is desirable.

Main duties of the job:

  • Implement and utilise a range of methods, assays and techniques at ACDP containment levels 2 & 3 in support of all activities associated with the TB evaluation group’s projects and to ensure project targets are met.
  • Develop, optimise and apply multiparameter cellular immunology assays for the investigation of mycobacteria-specific T-cell function and phenotype, such as polyfunctional T-cell analysis, and T-cell memory and homing phenotypes.
  • Apply multiplex bead array technology for the investigation of immune biomarkers as potential correlates of protection.
  • Supervise the running of the laboratory and take responsibility for the provision of reagents and consumables required for project area.
  • Assist the project team to identify, evaluate and adapt new technologies where appropriate and to ensure that the project operates to a high scientific standard using current methods.
  • Take responsibility for the supervision and training of junior staff allocated to the project as required.
  • Provide reports through analysis of data using software and databases as necessary, to meet project targets and for preparation of presentations and publications.
UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), Porton Down