GDIT’s Military Health team seeking a Research Scientist/Research Associate to support the Vector and Parasite Biology (VPB) Department within Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) Entomology Branch. The VPB maintains capacity in both primary research and vector and parasite production services which support intra- and inter-agency collaborators, such as the U.S. Army and Navy, Center for Disease Control (CDC), National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), as well as extramural collaborators. All capabilities are focused on development of vector-borne disease interventions (including vaccines and drugs) vector & vector-borne disease surveillance, and vector control.
Maintain cell culture laboratory capabilities to support the in vitro cultivation of cells and/or parasites. Perform pathogen-cell infections and cell-transfections.
Support the establishment and maintenance of molecular laboratory capabilities using high-throughput technologies to conduct molecular genotyping of pathogens and vectors via PCR, RT-PCR, qPCR, RNASeq, single cell, transcriptomic and proteomic tools. The contractor shall maintain and update current SOPs as well develop new SOPs.
Support the implementation and maintenance of immunological laboratory capabilities. The technical approaches may use flow cytometry, immunofluorescence, confocal microscopy and cell-labelling tools. The contractor shall maintain and update current SOPs as well develop new SOPs.
Support the cultivation of mammalian cells for the expression of recombinant products based on parasite- or vector antigens. The maintenance of cell cultures might require working during weekends. The contractor shall support the purification of recombinant products produced (proteins and antibodies).
Support the research conducted by different laboratories in the Entomology branch, including cultivation of malaria parasites, colonization of mosquitoes and animal studies using mouse, rabbit, guinea pigs and non-human primates. Tasks associated with insectary, parasite culture and animals may require working weekends.
Provide at least one peer reviewed scientific publication/year as first or senior author. The contractor shall participate in Branch seminars presenting results of current studies at least twice/year. The contractor shall prepare and present research results at national and international meetings.
Participate in scientific interactions and/or collaborations with other Branch members and the 6 other labs within the U.S. Military Entomology Research Program.
Support mission relevant studies through collaborative relationships with both intramural and extramural investigators. The contractor shall initiate and maintain collaborative relationships with external partners, including the CDC, Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI), NIAID, and various international and non-governmental organizations to coordinate RDT&E efforts toward understanding and reducing the risk of vector-borne diseases.
Support the development of research grant proposals, and conduct research studies under the supervision of the Department Chief.
Provide technical advice on the departmental operations and participate in resolution of all problems.
PhD in entomology, microbiology, parasitology or related fields with a working knowledge of managing a laboratory/department to include procuring funding, allocating resources, managing multiple projects, planning /executing experiments and managing personnel.
Exhibit and maintain effective technical knowledge, skills and abilities in the following areas: cell and molecular biology, immunology, biochemistry, bioinformatics, parasitology, entomology, and vector-borne diseases of military and global health importance.
Experience the field of infectious diseases, parasitology, medical entomology, immunology, biochemistry, cell and molecular biology, all within the context of application to public health.
Ability to work in laboratory and field environments; may require working evenings and weekends; may require travel and ability to work independently following a brief period of specific technical training.
Acquire and maintain training/certifications required for the position, duties, and responsibilities.
Must be a U.S. Citizen and able to obtain a public trust (T1)
Capable of harvesting insects and animals tissues for molecular and immunological analysis. Vector samples may include midgut, salivary glands, expectorated vector saliva and hemolymph. Animal tissues may include liver, spleen and blood from infected mammalian hosts.
Hand-on experience in insect colonization (mosquitoes, sandflies, blackflies), parasite culture (Plasmodium and Leishmania), and in vitro and in vivo models (mainly rodents) for studies of basic biology, infection and transmission of parasites.
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GDIT does not have a vaccination mandate applicable to all employees. To protect the health and safety of its employees and to comply with customer requirements, however, GDIT may require employees in certain positions to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Vaccination requirements will depend on the status of the federal contractor mandate and customer site requirements.
GDIT is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veteran status, or any other protected class.