Postdoctoral Fellow

Updated: November 1, 2019
Job ID: 215361
Status: Full-Time
Regular/Temporary: Regular
Location: Silver Spring, MD, United States

Join the HJF Team!

HJF is seeking a Postdoctoral Fellow to support the Adjuvants and Formulation Section of the Laboratory of Adjuvant and Antigen Research within the US Military HIV Research Program (MHRP) located at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) in Silver Spring, MD. HJF provides scientific, technical and programmatic support services to MHRP. 

The postdoctoral fellow will conduct basic laboratory research in the fields of chemistry, biochemistry, biophysics, and immunology of liposomes. The fellow will conduct research on the development of novel liposome formulations to be used as adjuvants for HIV-1 and other infectious disease vaccine candidates. The chemical compositions and biophysical parameters of these new liposome formulations will be characterized, and their adjuvant potency will be compared to the Army Liposomes Formulations in immunological studies. Both humoral and cellular immune responses will be assessed in animal models. 


  1. Conducts independent laboratory research and learns techniques required to succeed the research projects. The postdoctoral fellow will devote significant time to laboratory research to generate scientific data for publications on novel liposomal adjuvant formulations.
  2. Analyzes and interprets data on timely manner. Regularly consults with his/her supervisor. Follow scientific instructions.
  3. Develops a thorough understanding of scientific literature relating to research area.
  4. Publishes original research in peer-reviewed scientific journals and presents results at scientific meetings.
  5. Effectively works with MHRP internal and external collaborators. As an essential duty, prepares Army Liposome Formulations and other adjuvants for collaborative studies on a as needed-basis.
  6. Conducts biophysical, chemical and biochemical characterization of novel liposomal-based adjuvants, using particle sizing, zeta potential measurement, mass spectroscopy, capillary electrophoresis, and other state-of-the-art techniques.
  7. Conducts immunogenicity studies with new liposomal adjuvant formulations and ALF-adjuvanted vaccine formulations in animals. Assays antibody responses by ELISA and collaborates with other MHRP investigators for the assays of antibody avidity, affinity, neutralization, ADCC, etc. assays. Conducts and collaborates on cellular immune assays, including cytokine analysis by ELISPOT, Mesoscale, and FACS analysis for cytotoxic T cells and T-helper cell subsets.
  8. Develops and characterizes new adjuvant systems.
  9. Adapts new techniques or technologies to the projects. 
  10. Maintain up-to-date, clear and accurate laboratory notebooks. Maintain clean laboratory work environment, organized bench space.
  11. Follows all MHRP and WRAIR safety procedures.
  12. Follows good work ethics and be accountable.  
  13. Completes required training in a timely manner.
  14. Serves on MHRP or WRAIR committees if it applies.
  15. Runs assigned laboratory chores.
  16. Other duties as assigned.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: Proficient with Microsoft office and scientific graphing software, able to follow and develop standard laboratory procedures, has good communication skills both verbal and written. Experience with lipid/liposomes biochemistry, biophysics, and/or chemistry is desired, but not mandatory as is experience with particle size determination, mass spectroscopy, capillary electrophoresis, or other related techniques

Minimum Education/Training Requirements: Ph.D. (or equivalent) in chemistry, biochemistry, biophysics, immunology, or related science. 

Minimum Experience: Ph.D. (or equivalent) with 0 – 4 years postdoctoral work. 

Physical Capabilities: Long periods of standing and sitting; handling various chemicals.

Work Environment: Laboratory environment.

Background: Must have lived in the US 3 out of the past 5 years; eligible to pass a NACI background.

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.