A postdoctoral fellowship is available in Dr. Sherif's Lab at Virginia Tech's Alson H. Smith Jr. Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Winchester, Virginia. The research project is focused on investigating the ecological risks associated with dsRNA-based biofungicides, including the environmental fate of double-strand RNA (dsRNA), factors limiting non-target organism exposure to dsRNA, and potential unintended in non-target organisms exposed to dsRNA, and a framework of testing for non-target effects. The candidate will learn and use multiple molecular biology and plant pathology-related tools and techniques to determine the biodegradability rate of naked and minicell-encapsulated dsRNAs (ME-dsRNA) in water, soil, leaf, and fruit samples and characterize bacterial and fungal communities of the soil microbiota after frequent applications of dsRNA and ME-dsRNA. The candidate is expected to conduct greenhouse and field trials, collect samples, analyze research data, prepare project reports and manuscripts, and present research findings in professional meetings and scientific conferences. This is a 1-year renewable position and contingent on performance and funding.
1- Ph.D. in plant molecular biology, biotechnology, plant pathology or a plant biology-related field awarded no more than four years prior to the effective date of the appointment with a minimum of one year of eligibility remaining.
2- Valid driver's license and safe driving record.
1- Demonstrated experience in plant pathology, microbiology and/or molecular plant-microbe interactions.
2- Demonstrated skill and practical experience in molecular biology techniques (e.g., nucleic acid extraction, PCR, qRT-PCR, plasmid design and assembly, gene cloning, gene reporter assays, subcellular localization methods, and/or genetic transformation)
3- Knowledge and experience in plant biology, genetics, plant physiology, omics, microscopy and/or chromatography.
4- Good record of refereed journal articles and conference presentations.
5- Grant writing experience.
The successful candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check.
The successful candidate must have a valid driver's license and safe driving record
About Virginia Tech
Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually.
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