Research Associate in Microbial Genomics (fixed-term post)

open until filled
Natural Sciences, Biology, Biochemistry
University of Bath
Bath, United Kingdom
Starting from £33,797, rising to £40,322 Per Annum

Many serious diseases (eg, meningitis, pneumonia, blood/wound infections) are caused by commensal bacteria that are common on the skin or in the guts of healthy people. However, questions remain about what makes good strains go bad.

  • Are all strains equally able to cause disease?
  • What are the disease determinants?
  • Why aren’t pathogenic strains outcompeted in the commensal niche, where pathogenicity genes have no benefit?

Using large isolate and genome collections, new laboratory techniques, and state-of-the-art genome analyses this project aims to identify the pathogenicity genes and evolutionary forces that cause harmless bacteria to become opportunistic pathogens.

You will be part of a team responsible for culturing, sequencing, archiving and bioinformatic genome analysis of bacteria, and other microbiology duties that support the University’s research, teaching and professional services, as part of the Sheppard laboratory.

You will be involved in all phases of the project, including laboratory phenotyping, genome assembly and archiving, phylogenetic and genome-wide association study analysis. Databases will run on the Bacterial Isolate Genome Database (BIGSdb) platform and Genome analysis will be implemented using Medical Research Council Cloud Infrastructure for Microbial Bioinformatics (CLIMB). Experience with both of these is essential!

Being responsible for laboratory and in silico work and of user interfaces/pipelines based upon existing software. Using requisite microbiology, genomics and bioinformatics expertise in a timely and cost-effective manner, you will contribute significantly to laboratory microbiology support processes, genome sequencing, documenting research findings, and leading in writing manuscripts for publication in scientific journals.

Our benefits:

  • Excellent pension
  • 39 days holiday (including annual leave, discretionary days and bank holidays)
  • A flexible working environment
  • Ofsted outstanding rated nursery
  • Salary exchange scheme (NurseryPlus, Cycle to Work)
  • Membership discounts for our world-class sports training village
  • Interest free loans for public transport season tickets and motorcycle purchases for commuting
  • Onsite dentist and medical centre
  • Discounted physiotherapy services
  • Onsite parking

We are dedicated to providing a supportive and inclusive environment for our staff and students. We hold a Bronze Athena SWAN award in recognition of our ongoing commitment to gender equality and with an increasingly agile workforce, we're open to flexible working arrangements where appropriate.

This is a full-time role, working on a fixed-term contract for up to 11 months.

For an informal discussion about this position please contact Prof Samuel Sheppard (, however, please ensure your application is submitted via the University website.

The University of Bath is an equal opportunities employer and has an excellent international reputation with staff from over 60 different nations. To achieve our global aspirations, we welcome applicants from all backgrounds.

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