Joslin Diabetes Center

  • Senior Research Assistant

    Location US-MA-Boston
    Posted Date 6 days ago(6/13/2018 1:44 PM)
    Job ID
    # Positions
    Research - Research
  • Overview

    The Kulkarni laboratory studies the biology and function of pancreatic islets including insulin secreting beta cells and glucagon-secreting alpha cells. The lab has recently started to work on adult tissue-specific stem cells, particularly those stem cells that form the pancreatic islet cells.  Current topics under investigation include generation of induced pluripotent stem cells from mouse models of type 1 and type 2 diabetes and humans with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The studies are focused on using peripheral tissues (e.g. skin fibroblasts, blood cells and adult skeletal or adipose tissues) to generate induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Future studies will be focused on generating differentiated cells from these iPS cells, including pancreatic islet cells, mature skeletal muscle and adipocytes.



    A Senior Research Assistant is wanted to assist with ongoing experiments that include cell culture, molecular biology techniques, flow cytometry, histology, mammalian cell culture and animal studies, and banking of human and mouse iPS cells. The Senior Research Assistant’s responsibilities also will include maintenance of mouse colonies and genotyping of mouse strains. Some studies will involve collaboration with other investigators, and may require some assistance and work in these collaborators’ labs.



    • Participate in isolation and culture of murine and human islets and generate RNA and protein for analyses of methylation markers by gene and protein expression.
    • Undertake breeding, phenotyping and analyses of genetically engineered mouse models that lack expression of one or more methylation enzymes.
    • Undertake basic bioinformatics analyses of datasets generated from samples in 1 and 2 for further experimental plans
    • Assist in creating knockdown (using siRNA techniques) and over-expression of proteins in cell lines for analyses of specific enzyme functions relevant for RNA methylation and ability to undertake luciferase promoter assays
    • Access and contrast the datasets for DNA methylation form public databases (e.g. type 1, type 2 diabetes and obesity) that allow better comparisons and interpretation of RNA methylation data
    • Assist in flow cytometry and stem cell research involving the operation of high-speed, multi-parameter cell sorters and analyzers (complex, expensive optical/electronic instruments).
    •  Routine culture of pluripotent stem cells, including picking of colonies, expansion, freezing of cells and generation of mouse embryonic feeder cells.
    • Characterization of pluripotent stem cells, including teratoma assays, immunohistochemistry, qPCR and western blotting analyses.
    • Screen offspring of several mouse strains by preparation of genomic DNA and PCR or by isolation of blood cells and flow cytometry.
    • Assist with experimental procedures involving mice, including cell transplantation and injection of soluble factors, as well as routine monitoring for health.
    • Maintaining different animal strains, genotyping, injection, and other physiological experiments.
    • Other duties as assigned.


    DISTRIBUTION OF TIME: The following is an approximate distribution of time that can change, based on the PI’s determination, depending on the results of experiments at different times of any given study.


    1. Schedule and conduct animal and cell culture experiments, maintenance of cells and banking of human and mouse islets and cell lines (60% of time)


    1. Using high-speed, multi-parameter cell sorters and analyzers – comprehend and execute complicated equipment operation procedures including bioinformatics analyses of ‘omics’ datasets. (15% of time)


    1. Assist in the genotyping of mouse strains, in the isolation of islets and tissues from experimental animals, and in experimental procedures involving mice, including cell transplantation as well as routine monitoring for health. (15% of time)


    1. Assist in Training and advising other lab member in use of cell culture, cell sorters and analyzers. (5% of time)


    1. Work collaboratively with lab members/investigators and staff to design experiments and evaluate research data. Requires understanding aims of various projects. (5% of time)


    • Bachelor’s required, M.A. or M.S is preferred in Biology and/or related fields 
    • Minimum of 2+ years of previous undergraduate or post-graduate lab experience, particularly with human or mouse islet culture is highly desirable
    • Previous experience with mammalian cell culture and handling/screening of small animals will be preferred
    • Previous culture with stem cell or iPS cell work is an advantage.
    • Willingness to work with animals and human tissues
    • Knowledge of RNA and DNA methylation analyses, islet and cell culture and molecular biology and ability to apply this knowledge 
    • Basic knowledge of bioinformatics for analyses and comparison of “omics” datasets
    • Strong organizational skills and ability to prioritize responsibilities and follow tasks through to completion.
    • Ability to work with others as a team in a productive manner.


    Joslin Diabetes Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other status protected by law.


    Sorry the Share function is not working properly at this moment. Please refresh the page and try again later.
    Share on your newsfeed