Research Assistant (Regenerative Medicine)

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Updated: July 6, 2019
Job ID: 214632
Status: Full-Time
Regular/Temporary: Regular
Location: Silver Spring, MD, United States

Join the HJF Team!

HJF is seeking a Research Assistant who will work under the direct supervision of a Principal Investigator/Staff Scientist in the Regenerative Medicine Department of the Operational and Undersea Medicine Directorate, located at the Naval Medical Research Center (NMRC) in Silver Spring, Maryland. HJF provides scientific, technical and programmatic support services to the Regenerative Medicine Department. US Citizenship is required.

The incumbent will provide technical laboratory support and assistance in direct support of the Department's surgical, molecular and cell biology research endeavors involving acute traumatic care.  The incumbent’s daily duties will include tasks that are accomplished in a general research laboratory work environment and in a surgical operating room setting. Assignments will be performed under close supervision with the intent of enhancing the incumbent's knowledge and skills in order to perform more difficult assignments with greater independence at the next higher performance level.


  1. Conducts a variety of laboratory techniques based on written protocols established by the investigator.  The research will involve preparative centrifugation, DNA/RNA extractions, Agarose gel electrophoresis, SDS-PAGE, Western Blot, RT-PCR, ELISA assays, cell culture, preparation of test solutions/agents, administration of medications/drugs and handling of small rodents and large animals to include swine and non-human primates.
  2. Assists with research projects as directed. Makes intellectual contributions to current research activities and contributes to the design of experiments and new techniques.
  3. Collect research samples, ensuring integrity of specimens, collection methodology. Analyze samples and interpret results; compile information and results into meaningful formats to ensure content is appropriately represented; maintain detailed records of experimental data and outcomes for analysis.
  4. Assist with laboratory pre-operative surgical setups and helps with surgical procedures involving small and large animals. Assists in animal handling and sedation procedures, preparation of instruments for surgery and assists investigator during experimental surgical and postoperative procedures.
  5. Maintains detailed and accurate laboratory and surgical records of techniques, procedures and results for incorporation into research papers. Assists the investigator in conducting literature searches and data analysis inclusion in formal presentations.
  6. Monitor inventory of laboratory and surgical supplies and order as needed. Assures laboratory and surgical suites are adequately stocked with reagents and supplies and prepares solutions/medications and test reagents for experiments. 
  7. General lab maintenance including maintaining lab stock, managing chemical inventory and safety records, and providing general lab support as needed.
  8. Maintains safe, secure, and healthy work environment by following standards and procedures; complying with legal regulations. 
  9. Assist with euthanasia and necropsies.
  10. Assist in training new staff members
  11. The incumbent will present data at laboratory meetings, assist with manuscript drafting for publication and presentation at the discretion of the PI.
  12. Perform other assigned duties.

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Knowledge of laboratory safety rules and procedures as well as a basic laboratory procedures and methods to execute experimental procedures in accordance with protocols and the ability to apply this knowledge to record and interpret results to produce valid data in support of the research.
  • Skill in the operation and maintenance of a variety of laboratory and surgical instruments for use in the conduct of experiments.
  • Familiarity and/or demonstrates a willing to learn cellular and molecular biology based techniques including, PCR, ELISA, DNA/RNA extractions, LUMINEX, SDS-PAGE, Western Blot and cell culture based assays. 
  • Knowledge of Flow Cytometry will be an advantage
  • Knowledge of the care and handling of animals to include: rodents, swine and non-human primates.  
  • Knowledge of the use and maintenance of surgical and microsurgical instruments.
  • Knowledge of general surgical procedures, specimen collection (blood and tissue) and post-operative animal care procedures.
  • Knowledge of the legal and regulatory requirements for safe handling, use, care, and proper disposal of research animals and hazardous materials.
  • Ability to work well within a team-oriented/goal-oriented work approach, interfacing with veterinarians, pathologists, core lab personnel and surgical residents. Ability to work independently and proactively with limited supervision. 
  • Familiarity with operating room and diagnostic laboratory instruments and equipment to perform tests, analyses and laboratory procedures.
  • Good judgment and communication skills required, both written and verbal.
  • Strong computer skills (i.e. Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint, etc.).
  • Ability to multitask and work a flexible work schedule to include some occasional work hours on nights and during weekends. 

Minimum Education:  Associate’s or Bachelor's degree in a clinical, health, animal or life sciences field required.

Minimum Experience/Training Requirements: 0 - 2 years of relevant experience. Prior experience in Veterinary Technology/Medicine would be helpful. 

Physical Capabilities: The incumbent may be required to stand or sit for long periods of time or bend from a standing position.  The incumbent will need to possess excellent hand-eye coordination and be able to carry light to moderate laboratory equipment while walking.   

Work Environment: The work involves the moderate risks and discomforts typical of most research laboratories requiring the use of special safety precautions (e.g., lab coats, eye protections, ventilated hoods, gloves, and face masks) for handling animals, animal specimens, and chemicals/reagents. Work involves handling research animals requiring the use of appropriate safety precautions. 

Background: It is a condition of employment that you obtain a favorable Tier 3 background investigation and fingerprint check by the Federal Government in order to receive and maintain a security clearance and Common Access Card (CAC) which is needed to access the facility and Government network systems. US Citizenship is required.

Employment with HJF is contingent upon successful completion of a background check, which may include, but is not limited to, contacting your professional references, verification of previous employment, addresses, education, and credentials, a criminal background check, drug screening, and a department of motor vehicle (DMV) check.  

HJF is an equal opportunity and 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 protected veteran status.

Any qualifications to be considered as equivalents, in lieu of stated minimums, require the prior approval of the Chief Human Resources Officer.