Laboratory Specialist, Infectious Diseases and International Health (UVA)
Job ID: R0038964 | Laboratory Research | Full Time | Charlottesville, VA
The Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health at the University of Virginia (UVA) School of Medicine seeks candidates for a Laboratory Specialist to provide support for research on novel antibacterial peptides under the supervision of Dr. Molly Hughes and Dr. Matthew Crawford. The Laboratory Specialist will help examine the effectiveness of various antimicrobial peptides in killing a spectrum of bacteria, including antibiotic-resistant bacteria, in both in vitro assays and in vivo mouse models of infection.

Lab Specialists provide technical lab support by performing complex lab and research-related tasks. They act as specialists on research methods and equipment functions specific to investigations. They have the authority to adapt methods and procedures to meet the needs of research. They are distinguished from Lab Technicians by the types and duration of assignments, as well as the skills and expertise necessary to serve as resources on non-routine problems. Lab Specialists perform daily activities without supervision; their longer-term assignments require greater oversight. Lab Specialist employees often train others on work processes and policies.

Responsibilities include supporting the day-to-day operations of a research laboratory: ordering supplies, performing experiments, and analyzing data under the direction of the primary supervisor and senior staff. Techniques will include bacterial culture, antimicrobial killing and cytotoxicity assays, mouse husbandry and infection-model experiments, tissue and sample processing, DNA/RNA extraction, qPCR, flow cytometry, and other related techniques needed to support the project as it develops.

Additional information about the UVA Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health can be found here:

Selected publications that exemplify the field of work include the following:

Crawford MA, Fisher DJ, Leung LM, Lomonaco S, Lascols C, Cannatelli A, Giani T, Rossolini GM, Doi Y, Goodlett DR, Sharma SK, Khan E, Ernst RK, and Hughes MA. CXC chemokines exhibit bactericidal activity against multidrug-resistant Gram-negative pathogens. mBio. 8(6):e01549-17. 2017. PMCID: PMC5686536

Crawford MA, Margulieux KR, Singh A, Nakamoto RK, and Hughes MA. Mechanistic insights and therapeutic opportunities of antimicrobial chemokines. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2019, 88:119-128. PMCID: PMC6613794.

Cui Z, Luo Q, Bannon MS, Gray VP, Bloom TG, Clore MF, Hughes MA, Crawford MA, Letteri RA. Molecular engineering of antimicrobial peptide (AMP)-polymer conjugates. Biomater Sci. 2021, 9:5069-5091. PMCID: PMC8493962.

The successful candidate will be expected to:
  • Order lab supplies, maintain supply/biological inventories, and keep laboratory approvals in good standing and up to date.
  • Perform biological, chemical, and physical analyses.
  • Participate in animal (mouse) research, including care and feeding, models of bacterial infection and inflammation, and observation/scoring during postoperative or treatment periods.
  • Record accurate information and logs of experimental data.
  • Prepare support materials, preform data analyses and visualization, write reports, and assist with literature reviews.
  • Provide routine, technical, and administrative support to research projects. Over time, this will include helping to train new laboratory members and liaising with collaborators.
  • Collect specimens; set up and perform experiments of a repetitive nature; and prepare culture media, chemicals, reagents, and solutions as appropriate.
  • Operate, adjust, and maintain scientific instruments.
  • Keep informed of and help develop new laboratory techniques.
  • In addition to the above job responsibilities, other duties may be assigned.

Qualified candidates must have:
  • Education: Bachelor's degree.
  • Experience: 3 years of experience. 6 years of experience accepted in lieu of degree.

Preferred experience:
  • Microbiology, genomic, and tissue culture experience.

Required knowledge, skills, and abilities:
  • Willingness to work with animal models.
  • Experience working in the lab.
  • Ability to work with others from diverse backgrounds.
  • Attention to detail.

Physical demands:
This position can spend extensive periods of time standing and squatting while conducting experiments or caring for animals. Also requires keyboarding and other bench work and animal procedures requiring fine finger manipulation.

For additional information about the duties/responsibilities of the position, please contact Dr. Matthew Crawford at

This position is located in Charlottesville, VA. The position will remain open until filled. This position is a restricted position and is dependent upon project need, availability of funding, and performance. This position will not sponsor applicants for work visas. Anticipated hiring range: $15.00-$21.50/hour, commensurate with education and experience. This is a non-exempt-level, benefited position. For more information on the benefits at UVA, visit The University will perform background checks on all new hires prior to employment. A completed pre-employment health screen is required for this position prior to employment.

For more information about UVA and the Charlottesville community, please see and

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Charlottesville, VA
Charlottesville, VA 22903

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