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Research Officer, Devices for Cell & Gene Therapy and Synthetic Biology (2 positions)

City: Toronto 

Organizational Unit: Medical Devices and Centre for Research and Applications in Fluidic Technologies (CRAFT)

Classification: RO 

Tenure: 2 term positions  

Duration: 2 years 

Language Requirements: English

Note

On October 6, 2021, the Government of Canada announced the launch of a mandatory vaccination policy across the federal public service.

 

The Policy on COVID-19 Vaccination for the National Research Council requires you to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and that you attest to your vaccination status prior to the date of your appointment unless accommodated based on a medical contraindication, religion, or another prohibited ground of discrimination as defined under the Canadian Human Rights Act.  You can find more specific information on the collection and use of your personal information when you submit your attestation.

The NRC Advantage

Great Minds. One Goal. Canada's Success.

 

The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) is the Government of Canada's largest research organization supporting industrial innovation, the advancement of knowledge and technology development. We collaborate with over 70 colleges, universities and hospitals annually, work with 800 companies on their projects, and provide advice or funding to over 8000 Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) each year.

 

We bring together the brightest minds to deliver tangible impacts on the lives of Canadians and people around the world. And now, we want to partner with you.  Let your expertise and inspirations make an impact by joining the NRC.

 

At NRC, we know diversity enables excellence in research and innovation. We are committed to a diverse and representative workforce, an open and inclusive work environment, and contributing to a more inclusive Canadian innovation system.

 

NRC welcomes all qualified applicants and encourages candidates to self-declare as members of the following designated employment equity groups: women, visible minorities, Aboriginal peoples and persons with disabilities.

 

Please advise of any accommodation measures required to enable you to be assessed in a fair and equitable manner. They are available to all candidates for further assessment. Related information received will be addressed confidentially.

The CRAFT Advantage

The Centre for Research and Applications Fluidic Technologies (CRAFT) is a unique, long-term partnership between NRC and the University of Toronto (U of T). CRAFT is focussed on excellence in microfluidics research and innovation, training the next generation of researchers and entrepreneurs, and enhancing Canada’s capacity for translating microfluidic technologies and their applications in areas of national and international importance, including in vitro diagnostics and precision medicine, cell and gene therapies, biomanufacturing and organ-on-chip systems for drug development. The Centre is co-located at the Council’s Boucherville campus outside of Montreal and the University’s St. George campus in downtown Toronto (https://craftmicrofluidics.ca/).

 

CRAFT brings together Canada’s brightest minds in microfluidics to deliver tangible impacts on the lives of Canadians and people around the world. And now, we want to partner with you. Let your expertise and inspirations make an impact by joining our team of experts. 

Your Challenge

Help bring research to life and drive your career forward with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC), Canada's largest research and technology organization.

 

We are looking for two (2) Research Officers (RO) specializing in bioengineering supporting both fundamental discovery and medical microdevice technology development and translation in the areas of in vitro diagnostics and precision medicine, cell and gene therapies, biomanufacturing and organ-on-chip systems for drug development. The successful candidates will join the NRC Bioanalytical Micro-Nano Devices (BioAMND) Section, which spans three locations (Toronto, Montreal, and Winnipeg) and includes 43 researchers and technical officers specializing in physics, Nano and microfabrication engineering, chemistry, and molecular and cellular biology. The RO's will strengthen NRC and CRAFT’s internationally recognized research activities and help transform discoveries into value-added research platforms and clinically adopted devices. The ROs will share NRC and CRAFT’s core values of Integrity, Excellence, Respect and-Creativity.

 

The primary responsibility of the RO's is to develop original research and development (R&D) activities in support of CRAFT and NRC scientific and technological objectives through research of the highest international calibre. These activities will lead to discovery and translation to clinically validated medical technologies. The RO's will work in a team environment with researchers in the CRAFT science and technology community including NRC researchers and engineers, U of T faculty members and trainees, as well as clinician researchers at U of T-affiliated hospitals (i.e., Toronto Academic Health Science Network).

 

Candidates may be considered for an Adjunct Professor appointment in an appropriate U of T department, such as the Institute of Biomedical Engineering and others within the Faculties of Applied Science & Engineering, Medicine, Arts & Science, and Pharmacy.

Your Challenge (Cont.)

The RO will contribute to CRAFT and NRC programs by developing device-based methods to support  discovery and applications  in areas such as molecular analysis, single-cell and organ-on-chip analytics, immunology, cell- and gene-based therapies and synthetic biology. The successful candidate is expected to initiate and lead an innovative research program of the highest international caliber that will attract local, national and international academic and industrial collaborators and clients. The RO will be located at CRAFT in Toronto and activities will include:

 

  • Developing, leading, and managing research projects supporting NRC and CRAFT strategic priorities in areas such as of immunology, regenerative medicine, RNA technologies and emerging cell- and gene-based therapies.   
  • Assembling multidisciplinary R&D teams with microfabrication, microfluidics and molecular biology  expertise and proposing new research initiatives in response to CRAFT and NRC R&D.
  • Developing and submitting grant proposals with academic and/or industry collaborators to support new research initiatives (e.g., NSERC, CIHR, Genome Canada).

 

The successful candidate will be expected to initiate and lead in collaboration with other NRC researchers and CRAFT principal investigators. The innovative research will be of the highest international caliber and supported by NRC programs, CRAFT collaboration center and externally funding sources

 

Novel approaches using microfluidics and artificial intelligence to engineer immune and stem cells and responses for cell & gene therapy and regenerative medicine applications are of particular interest.

Screening Criteria

Applicants must demonstrate within the content of their application that they meet the following screening criteria in order to be given further consideration as candidates:

Education

Applicants must have a PhD in Biomedical Engineering, Bioengineering, Biotechnology, Biology, Biochemistry, Biophysics or related discipline. 

 

For information on certificates and diplomas issued abroad, please see Degree equivalency

Experience

Excellence in research will be determined by the quality of articles submitted in the application; output and impact of research is at high international levels; publications in top-ranked, internationally recognized, and field-relevant academic journals; presentations at significant conferences; awards and accolades; and strong endorsements by referees of high international stature. 

 

The RO will also possess several of the following:

 

  • Significant experience with cell biology, including cell signaling assays, reporter gene assays, cell surface labeling, cell transfection and gene delivery, and/or gene editing technologies using viral and non-viral delivery mechanisms in human cell lines and primary cells.
  • Significant experience with molecular biology techniques including: DNA and RNA extraction and purification, PCR, qPCR, digital droplet PCR, cloning by PCR, next gen sequencing library generation and screening, and DNA assembly.
  • Experience in designing and using devices and microfluidics supporting R&D for molecular diagnostics, single-cell molecular analysis, synthetic biology, gene- or cell-based therapies, including stem cell and CAR-T.
  • Experience in immunological assays, such as cell-based assays for T cell signalling, cytotoxicity, cytokine secretion, proliferation and exhaustion.
  • Experience in lab-on-chip systems for molecular analytics and cell biology, including experience with T cell transduction and expansion.

 

Candidates must have a track record of excellence in research, and a clearly demonstrated trajectory towards world-class scientific leadership. 

 

Relevant research experience in developing or using devices, especially lab-on-chip systems, in areas such as immunology, cell and gene therapy, and/or RNA technologies will be considered an asset. 

Condition of Employment

 Reliability Status

 

All employees of the National Research Council are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and attest to their vaccination status unless accommodated based on a medical contraindication, religion, or another prohibited ground of discrimination as defined under the Canadian Human Rights Act.

Assessment Criteria

Candidates will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:

Technical Competencies

  • Strong knowledge of  molecular biology and skills (DNA/RNA assays): DNA and RNA extraction and purification, PCR, qPCR, digital droplet PCR, cloning by PCR, next gen sequencing library generation and screening, and DNA assembly; 
  • Strong cell biology knowledge and skills: cell signaling assays, reporter gene assays, cell surface labeling, cell transfection and gene delivery, device-based cell culture,   blood cells handling, isolation and culture, device-based tissue handling and cells isolation, cell viability, proliferation and cytotoxicity assays. 
  • Strong skills in designing and using devices and microfluidics for: DNA and RNA extraction and purification, PCR, qPCR, digital droplet PCR, cloning by PCR, next gen sequencing library generation and screening, and DNA assembly.
  • Skills in using devices and microfluidics for cell biology’s, single cell molecular analysis, synthetic biology, gene or cell-based therapies, including stem cell and CAR-T.
  • Skills in using devices and microfluidics for cell biology’s, single cell molecular analysis, synthetic biology, gene or cell-based therapies, including stem cell and CAR-T. 
  • Ability to work with animal models or organoids of disease such as a cancer, diabetes, immune, and other diseases; methods of analysis of foreign agents in these models. 

Behavioural Competencies

  • Research - Communication (Level 2)
  • Research - Creative thinking (Level 2)
  • Research - Results orientation (Level 2)
  • Research - Self-knowing and self-development (Level 2)
  • Research - Teamwork (Level 2)

Competency Profile(s)

For this position, the NRC will evaluate candidates using the following competency profile(s): Research

 

View all competency profiles

Relocation

Relocation assistance will be determined in accordance with the NRC's directives.

Compensation

This position is classified as a Research Officer (RO), a group that is unique to the NRC. Candidates are remunerated based on their expertise, outcomes and impacts of their previous work experience relative to the requirements of the level. The salary scale for this group is vast, from $57,220 to $161,754 per annum, which permits for employees of all levels from new graduates to world renowned experts to be fairly compensated for their contributions.

 

NRC employees enjoy a wide-range of competitive benefits including comprehensive health and dental plans, pension and insurance plans, vacation and other leave entitlements.

Notes

  • ​A pre-qualified list may be established for similar positions for a one year period.
  • Preference will be given to Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada. Please include citizenship information in your application.
  • The incumbent must adhere to safe workplace practices at all times.
  • We thank all those who apply, however only those selected for further consideration will be contacted.

 

Applications must include a C.V. with a list of publications, 3 sample articles, research statement and cover letter. Selected candidates must also arrange to have three letters of reference (pdf, on letterhead, signed, and scanned).

 

 

Please direct your questions, with the requisition number (12206) to:

E-mail: NRC.NRCHiring-EmbaucheCNRC.CNRC@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca

Telephone: 819-431-8570 

Closing Date: Posted until filled

 

 

For more information on career tools and other resources, check out Career tools and resources

 

*If you are currently a term or continuing employee at NRC, please apply through the SuccessFactors Careers module from your NRC computer.

 

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