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Research Assistant - MGU 1404

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We are seeking a highly motivated Research Assistant with a keen interest in metabolism and the genetics of type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Overall purpose

The overall aim of our research programme on the genetics of type 2 diabetes is to investigate mechanisms underlying human genome wide association (GWA) loci for diabetes, with a particular focus on adipose tissue and fat distribution. Genome wide association (GWA) studies have identified hundreds of robust well-replicated human loci linked to T2D[1] and associated traits. These associations include genes involved in fat distribution (waist-hip-ratio, WHR) which have associations with diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk independently of BMI[2]. The alteration of metabolic risk through changes in the size and capacity of particular adipose depots points to important physiological mechanisms that are not well understood. 

About the role

The RA will carry out functional and mechanistic analysis of GWAS loci for type 2 diabetes that are already being worked on by the group and as directed. Our strategy has been to select candidate genes and SNPs in GWA loci by collaborating with human geneticists, clinicians and bioinformaticians to help identify the most likely causal genes or transcripts at each locus.  

Working on selected loci the RA will further investigate candidate effector genes/transcripts, candidate regulatory SNPs and elements, using our own and publicly available data and tools (epigenome, gene structure, expression and association data). The RA will assist in carrying out functional analysis of candidate SNPs, genes and transcripts in vivo in the mouse and/or in vitro in both human and mouse cells. For example, by making or using conditional overexpression, knockout, knockdown, reporter and genome-edited alleles. This will include detailed in vivo metabolic physiology, using tissues for analysis and in vitro cellular mechanistic studies using a broad range of techniques as required. 

About you

You should have knowledge of genetics and an interest in using the mouse as a model. 

You must be capable of working in an efficient and organised way and performing experiments to a very high standard of accuracy and reproducibility. Good and accurate record keeping is essential.

About us

The Mammalian Genetics Unit is a UK Medical Research Council unit at the MRC Harwell Institute, an international centre at the forefront of mouse genetics research.

 We aim to advance medicine through cutting-edge research into the genetic basis of disease. Our research programs span an entire lifetime, from embryonic development to diseases of ageing. They cover many areas, investigating the underlying genetics in disorders of sex development, the relationship between disrupted circadian rhythms and psychiatric disease, the role of cilia in development and disease, age-related deafness and otitis media, neurodegenerative disease and type 2 diabetes. 

Choosing to come to work at the MRC (part of UKRI) means that you will have access to a whole host of benefits from a defined benefit pension scheme and excellent holiday entitlement to access to employee shopping/travel discounts and salary sacrifice cycle to work scheme


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