Univ FL postdoc in human molecular genetics/epigenetics

Post-doctoral position in Human Molecular Genetics and Epigenetics, Laboratory of Connie Mulligan, Department of Anthropology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA

Post-doctoral position to work on two ongoing projects: 1) Investigation of an epigenetic mechanism to mediate the effects of maternal stress on maternal and infant health in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Examination of DNA methylation patterns in mothers and newborns from the DRC to test whether epigenetic alterations mediate the effects of maternal exposure to stressors on fetal development and neonatal health. We are testing for associations between maternal stress exposures, newborn health outcomes and changes in DNA methylation and/or gene expression in mothers and their infants. More broadly, we are interested in the idea that behavior and complex phenotypes may be shaped by early life experiences that alter gene expression through epigenetic alterations. See http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.4161/epi.21180 and http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/cdev.12487/epdf. 2) Investigation of genetic, epigenetic, and biological signatures of war trauma exposures and impact of a program intervention in Syrian refugees. This is a collaboration with Catherine Panter-Brick (Anthropology, Yale University) to integrate genetic and epigenetic analyses into an ongoing study to measure the health effects of a program intervention to reduce psychosocial stress in Syrian refugees. Genetic variants will be assayed to predict the impact of past stress exposures and effects of the program intervention on self-reported mental health. Epigenetic variants will be tested as possible mediators of the effect of stress on mental health outcomes. See project website at http://www.elrha.org/map-location/yale-psychosocial-call2/.

Qualifications: A PhD, good publication record, and strong background in the generation of genetic data (NGS, microarray, SNP detection, etc.) and data analysis (gene association analysis, regression analysis, genetic ancestry estimation, linkage analysis, etc) are essential. Experience with methylation data (Illumina chips, pyrosequencing, etc), RNA sequence/transcriptome data and/or additional computational or bioinformatics experience (e.g. computer programming, simulation analysis, etc) is a plus. In addition to the projects listed above, there are excellent opportunities for the successful candidate to develop new lines of research as well as productive collaborations outside the lab.

The University of Florida is a leading research institution with a university-wide commitment to genetics research. The Department of Anthropology (www.anthro.ufl.edu) has 30 full-time faculty with diverse interests and a very strong biological subfield, with emphases on molecular, paleo, and forensic anthropology. The department is one of the top rated programs in the country (6th among public institutions, 11th overall). The University of Florida Genetics Institute (www.ufgi.ufl.edu) is an inter-college institute with a dedicated research building intended to enhance opportunities for collaboration. Gainesville is located in north central Florida (away from the hurricanes!), with average temperatures ranging from 45F to 90F. Beaches on the gulf and Atlantic coast are ~ 1½ hours away.

To apply: via email, send a CV, a statement of research interests, and the names and contact information for three references. Applications and inquiries should be addressed to Connie Mulligan at cmulligan@ufl.edu.

Review of materials will begin July 15 and will continue until the position is filled. Start date is flexible and can start as early as August, 2016. Salary is commensurate with experience. Position may be extended for a total of three years. Informal inquiries prior to submitting a formal application are welcome. AA/EOE.