Job Listings

Lab Technician (Research Specialist) - Department of Surgery

West Virginia University
Job Location:
Morgantown, West Virginia
Laboratory and Research


West Virginia University Health Science Center is currently accepting applications for a Lab Technician (Research Specialist) in the Department of Surgery

About the Opportunity

The primary purpose of this position is to support the Principal Investigator (PI) as a Research Specialist providing daily oversight of the lab, including ordering of reagents/supplies and breeding/weaning/care/tissue collection/genotyping of the laboratories transgenic mouse colonies. Incumbent will also perform a wide variety of molecular, cell biology and immunology experiments and actively participate in research projects initiated in the lab. This position will advance the lab's studies in tumor immunology and provide crucial data that can be used for future research opportunities.

This position provides program, as well as direct internal and external client support services. Responds to inquiries and independently resolves matters of low to moderate complexity. Responsibilities require some judgment, resourcefulness, and originality, but diverse guides and precedents are usually available to apply or adapt to the circumstances. Work effort has considerable impact on client services, program and project image, with potential legal liabilities.

We strongly believe in work-life balance and keeping time for things we love outside our work. WVU offers generous benefits, including:

  • 13 paid holidays (staff holiday calendar)
  • 24 annual leave (vacation) days per year
  • 18 sick days per year
  • (for when you're ill, for when you need time to care for sick family, for your own, or your family's, regularly scheduled medical appointments. Who is family for the purpose of this leave? A lot of people in your life including immediate relatives and in-laws as well as others considered to be members of your household living under the same roof)
  • WVU offers a range of health insurance and other benefits (this position is a benefits-eligible non-classified staff position)
  • 401(a) retirement savings with 6% employee contribution match, eligibility to continue health insurance, and other retiree perks. Looking for more retirement benefits information? Check out retirement health insurance benefits, retirement income, and FAQ's.
  • Wellness programs

What you'll do:

  • Maintains care of animal colonies for the lab:
    • Performs animal husbandry including monitoring health status of colonies, ordering animals, arranging for special needs according to protocols.
    • Works directly with PI to perform scheduled matings of transgenic animals and monitor births according to ongoing laboratory needs.
    • Maintains an accurate written and computerized log of matings, births, and deaths of animals in the colony (mLIMS mouse database).
    • Performs weaning, tail clipping, and ear tagging of young animals.
    • Performs genotyping of all mouse colonies as per discussions with PI
    • Performs procedures, including but not limited to, subcutaneous, intratissue, intracardial and/or tail vein injections, retro-orbital bleeds, anesthesia, general surgery, and oral gavage as required by protocols.
    • Assists PI and laboratory personnel in developing and maintaining animal protocols to achieve the goals of the research, while maintaining standards and efficiency of animal care.
    • Performs whole and partial animal imaging using optical, ultrasound, EPR and MRI modalities.
  • Assists the PI and coordinates tasks for students and other staff within the lab setting. May be responsible for assisting with training on area(s) of expertise to new individuals on proper procedures, techniques, equipment usage, etc.
  • Assists PI in running all aspects of the day to day operations within the laboratory.
  • Maintenance of the laboratory, laboratory equipment, glass ware, reagents.
  • Keeps accurate inventory.
  • Makes reagents and solution as necessary.
  • Serves as primary contact for vendors to order supplies or equipment repairs as necessary.
  • Performs or assists in research, participates in lab meetings and serves on other committees as needed.
  • Performs or assists with a variety of molecular, cell biology and immunology experiments to conduct cancer research projects in the area of tumor models and tumor immunology. These may include:
    • Culture and manipulation of cells - culture of human and murine cells, generation of stably expressing cell lines, cell based assays on proliferation, death, survival.
    • Analysis of genes - cloning of genes (cDNAs) by different methods, PCR amplification, generation of mutant genes (cDNAs), analysis of DNA/RNA sequencing results, preparation of samples for RNA and whole genome sequencing.
    • Analysis of proteins - expression and purification of proteins from cells and tissue, isolation of protein lysates, analysis of proteins by SDS/PAGE, immunoblot, protein staining, identification and characterization of protein complexes, immunoprecipitation, co-immunoprecipitation, immunofluorescence analysis, cytometry analysis, immunohistochemistry, of protein expression of tissues.
    • Tissue analysis - tissue analysis include but no limited to tissue procurement, fixation, analysis using in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, microscopy.
    • Microscopy-based analysis of cells and tissue involves, usage of confocal and epi-fluorescent microscopes; live imaging of cells, electron microscopy of fixed tissue.
    • Assessment of coagulation parameters utilizing platelet aggregometry and thromboelastography
    • Collection and recording of data - keeping detailed records on all performed experiments; collect, analyze and present data using basic computer-based programs such as Excel, Word, PowerPoint. Collection and inventory tracking of lab resources, management and archiving of basic lab tools. Keeping animal inventory, health records and up to date policy records.
  • Performs manual or computer-assisted data analysis.
  • Assists with writing research papers, reports, articles for journals in order to contribute to and be listed as a co-author on publications, which will help contribute to the reputation of WVU as a major research institution.
  • Collaborates with other investigators both internally and at other institutions to gather and share common research data techniques in order to design new procedures for own research.
  • Performs literature searches, assists with writing protocols for PI.
  • Maintain personal growth and development by attending courses or seminars, subject to PI's approval.
  • Manages quality assessment documents and databases.
  • Actively participates in lab meetings.
  • Assists PI on a regular basis to plan experiments, discuss obtained results, and all aspects that concern the laboratory. Designs strategies to obtain research objectives and keeps accurate lab books/reports. Provides training to others on these matters.
  • Ensures compliance with University guidelines for research by reviewing safety procedures, animal protocols, chemical hygiene plan, monitoring the handling and disposal of hazardous materials and developing internal methods for maintaining a safe working environment.
  • Completes other general administrative/laboratory research duties as assigned by the PI.

  • Master's degree in physiology, biochemistry, biology or related field;
  • 0-6 months of related research experience in a laboratory or clinical setting, conducting experiments and/or handling animals
  • Knowledge of laboratory environment and appropriate procedures
  • Ability to evaluate and perform surgery on animals
  • Highly skilled at using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
  • Highly skilled at using related laboratory equipment.
  • Ability to measure volumes and/or weights of chemicals, calculate correct concentrations (in molar units) and prepare solutions according to precise specifications. Skilled at assessing chemical concentrations/amounts of various chemical components in solutions.
  • Strong time management and work load skills.
  • Skilled at organizing information and preparing reports.
  • Ability to search, read and interpret current literature in tumor biology/biochemistry/transgenic animal techniques related to the current project/work within the lab and extract experimental protocols
  • Ability to perform experiments following laboratory protocols.
  • Ability to operate laboratory equipment.
  • Ability to perform basic calculations.
  • Good organizational and communication skills.
  • Ability to effectively respond to questions from supervisor and lab mates
  • Ability to perform basic computer work (MS Office suite, Photoshop, DNA/protein analysis, statistical programs).
  • Ability to maintain well-organized laboratory notebook to document experiments and results.
  • Knowledge of laboratory animal housekeeping, breeding colony management, health assessment, cell/tissue transplantation and other techniques.
  • Be teachable and willing to learn new experimental assays needed for specific projects.


  • Due to the nature of this job, it may or may not require Medical Monitoring

About WVU

At West Virginia University, we leverage our talents and resources to create a better future for our state and the world. As West Virginia's land-grant university, WVU has three campuses that touch each corner of the state. The WVU System includes 518 buildings on 15,880 acres, Extension Service offices in all 55 counties, ten experimental farms and four forests.

From the groundbreaking R1 research of our flagship campus in Morgantown to the career-oriented programs of WVU Potomac State in Keyser to the technology-intensive programs at WVU Tech in Beckley - the contributions of WVU employees directly impact the 1.8 million people of West Virginia every day, no matter their role or position.

Service, curiosity, respect, accountability, and appreciation are the core values that unite Mountaineers, inspiring one another to work tirelessly and support others as they seek to reach new heights. After all, when you're a Mountaineer, impossible is just another mountain to climb.

Creating an inclusive, engaged, and dynamic learning environment is core to WVU's academic mission. We welcome candidates who can contribute a range of ideas, approaches and experiences.

To learn more about West Virginia University, visit View current career opportunities at

West Virginia University is proud to be an Equal Opportunity employer and is the recipient of an NSF ADVANCE award for gender equity. The University values diversity among its faculty, staff, and students, and invites applications from all qualified applicants regardless of race, ethnicity, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, nationality, genetics, disability, or Veteran status.

Job Posting: Oct 12, 2022

Posting Classification: FE/AP

Exemption Status: Exempt

Benefits Eligible: Yes
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