The Research Fellow we seek will be involved in projects that center on the identification and utilization of naturally secreted proteins of the filarial parasite Onchocerca volvulus as biologics (immunomodulatory and/or immunostimulatory proteins) for human use. Specifically, the focus will be on the O. volvulus protein Ov-ASP-1, which has intrinsic immunostimulatory properties and can be used as a powerful immunostimulatory adjuvant; it promotes a balanced Th1/Th2 antibody response and cellular responses to several soluble bystander vaccine antigens and commercial inactivated viral vaccines, including trivalent-inactivated flu vaccines. Our long-term objective is to develop this highly effective and safe protein adjuvant for varied vaccines using a simple aqueous formulation and a much lower dose of antigen. By enhancing vaccine efficacy in this way, we can effectively increase the number of vaccine doses available that can be administered to humans to boost their immune response. This research project has therefore translational implications for the prevention of various infectious diseases. Opportunity will also be available to study the mechanism of action of this adjuvant on its own, and in synergy with other adjuvants, as well as other molecules that will be identified as immunomodulatory and/or immunostimulatory proteins. In addition, the Postdoctoral Research Fellow could join other projects that focus on the pre-clinical development of effective vaccines against the filarial parasite, O. volvulus.
Applicants should have a PhD and/or MD with broad knowledge and experience in innate and adaptive immunity (human and mouse), system biology, vaccinology, and mode of actions of vaccines and immunomodulatory and/or immunostimulatory molecules or proteins, with an interest in the translational aspects of these disciplines. Some experience in molecular techniques, bioinformatics and the use of experimental animal models is also required. Excellent analytical and communication skills and a drive to independently ask and test scientific hypotheses are crucial. The appointed person is expected to be productive, creative, self-motivated with a good track record in the broader discipline of immunology with practical knowledge in cellular and molecular immunological techniques, be able to work efficiently, carefully organize experiments, and work as a member of a team.
We offer a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefit package. The New York Blood Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Interested applicants should send Curriculum vitae, statement of interest and the names, addresses and Telephone/E-mails of three references.