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Post-doctoral researcher: Impatiens downy mildew pathogen populations

Jan 3

Written by: SuperUser Account
1/3/2017 5:22 PM 

A post-doctoral research opportunity is available to study impatiens downy mildew disease with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Systematic Mycology and Microbiology Laboratory (SMML) in Beltsville, MD.  The desired appointment start date is the spring of 2017.

Impatiens downy mildew (IDM) disease caused by the oomycete Plasmopara obducens is one of several destructive downy mildews affecting specialty crop production in the U.S. and worldwide.  The selected applicant will establish sentinel plots in partnership with collaborators and major U.S. arboreta collections and use these resources together with molecular biology tools to address questions about pathogen evolution, persistence and the role of soil-borne innoculum in the IDM disease cycle.  In addition to serving as lead for this project, the selected applicant will cooperate with other team members, students, collaborators and stakeholders, and contribute to common research goals.

This research project is part of an ongoing multi-state, multi-disciplinary collaboration focused on understanding and mitigating downy mildew diseases in specialty crops.  Custom molecular tools and extensive resources are available to support the research objectives, including genome and transcriptome datasets, SSR markers, pathogen-specific fluorescent in situ hybridization assays.  The selected applicant will also have access to an extensive collection of genotyped P. obducens specimens documenting the disease across the U.S. and elsewhere, plus direct access to state-of-the-art wet lab, genomics, bioinformatics and imaging tools both in-house and as part of ARS core facilities. 

Job Requirements:

To be eligible, applicants must have received a Ph.D. in plant pathology, evolutionary biology, molecular biology, microbiology or a closely related field within five years of the desired starting date.  The successful candidate will: (1) possess excellent wet lab and analytical skills; (2) have experience studying organismal molecular diversity at the population level; (3) be able to independently design and execute research projects with minimum supervision; (4) be highly motivated, reliable, and able to succeed in a diverse and interdisciplinary environment; and (5) have excellent verbal and written communication skills.  Previous experience working with biotrophs, oomycetes and/or plant pathogens is highly desirable.  This position requires a pre-appointment check and a full background investigation.  This opportunity is available to U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents only.

Applications: To apply online, please use the Zintellect system at https://www.zintellect.com/Posting/Details/2876 , opportunity number ARS-SMML-2016-888-0017-01.  Pre-application inquiries are welcome by email; contact Dr. Jo Anne Crouch at joanne.crouch@ars.usda.gov.  Review of applications will begin immediately, with first consideration given to those received by January 30, 2017.

Pay scale:  The appointment is full-time for 12 months and may be renewed based upon recommendation of the ARS and availability of funding.  The annual stipend rate for this position is $51,000.  A stipend supplement in the amount of $6,000 is available to offset the cost of a health insurance plan, and relocation expenses in the amount of $600 will be reimbursed, with prior approval.  

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