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Postdoctoral Fellow: RNA Therapies

Location Cambridge, England, United Kingdom Job ID R-144655 Date posted 28/07/2022

Cambridge, UK

Competitive Salary, Bonus & Benefits

Do you want to use pioneering technologies to develop genetic therapies for a range of diseases? Are you motivated to learn how to deploy self-amplifying RNA (saRNA) for vaccines and therapeutic use?

About AstraZeneca:

AstraZeneca is a global, science-led, patient-centred biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines for some of the world’s most serious disease. But we’re more than a global leading pharmaceutical company. At AstraZeneca, we‘re dedicated to being a Great Place to Work where you are empowered to push the boundaries of science and fuel your entrepreneurial spirit. There’s no better place to make a difference to medicine, patients and society.

About the Postdoc Programme:

Bring your expertise, apply your knowledge, follow the science and make a difference.

AstraZeneca’s Postdoc Programme is for self-motivated individuals looking to tackle exciting, high impact projects in a collaborative, engaging and innovative environment. You'll work with peers and professionals from a diverse group of backgrounds, and a world class academic mentor specifically aligned to your project. We'll help you develop valuable networks which support your research and future career development.

AstraZeneca Postdocs are respected as specialists and encouraged to speak up. They lead ground-breaking drug discovery and development research projects. Our vibrant, multi-disciplinary scientific teams empower and support our Postdocs, and we encourage them to share their research at conferences, publish papers, achieve their goals and make a difference to our patients.

You'll learn from industry leaders working on innovative research across our organization. Our Postdoc Training Programme will support you to develop transferrable skills from influencing others to shape the agenda, to data analysis.

Are you ready to explore this exciting next step in your research career? Apply today!

About the Opportunity:

This exciting project strives to understand how innate inhibitory proteins (IIPs) interact with the innate immune system pathways within the mammalian cell to promote and prolong the persistence of self-amplifying RNA (saRNA). The project will identify the points within these pathways at which saRNA engages, and the inhibitory effects required to enhance and prolong saRNA levels.

Combining therapeutic RNA technologies with cell biology, you will design and deliver self-amplifying RNA molecules to mammalian cells and analyse the points of interaction with the innate immune system. You’ll conduct detailed studies on how the saRNA and the IIPs interact with each other and the RNA sensing pathways.

This is an opportunity to work on ground breaking RNA technologies in AstraZeneca’s In Vivo Expressed Biologics Team, with guidance from Professor Robin Shattock from Imperial College, London, one of the world experts in saRNA. You will learn about how saRNA is deployed, increase your skills and knowledge in cell biology, working with RNA, and publish your findings in leading journals. 

Qualification, Skills & Experience


  • A PhD (or equivalent) in molecular/ cellular biology (or closely related field)
  • Experience of modern molecular biology techniques
  • Experience of mammalian cell culture and transfection
  • In depth knowledge of innate signalling pathways
  • Experimental method optimisation and creative problem solving skills
  • Strong planning and organisation skills
  • Ability to see opportunities, learn, and apply that learning to drive innovation
  • Good networking, collaboration and teamworking skills
  • Confident communicating with a wide range of collaborators


  • Skilled in using mRNA or self-amplifying RNA techniques
  • Practical experience of working with DNA or RNA based therapeutics

This is a 3-year programme. 2 years will be a Fixed Term Contract, with a 1-year extension which will be merit based.

If you’re ready for an exciting, rewarding challenge, apply today!

Advert Opens: 29th July, 2022

Advert Closes: 11th September, 2022

50056739 C SCGE R&D BioPharmaceuticals

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Great culture, great work assignments, supportive management. Rotation opportunity within the company. They value inclusion and diversity.