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Senior Research Associate in Biology and Biotechnology


Standard Grade 8: £45,585 - £54,395 per annum

Closing date

Jan 03, 2024 12:00PM


We are seeking a full-time Senior Postdoctoral Fellow to work with the Engineered Biotechnology Research Group led by Prof Harrison Steel at the Department of Engineering Science in central Oxford.  The role is fixed-term until 25 September 2025, with possibility of extension, subject to confirmed additional funding.


This position is part of the Defeating Antibiotic Resistance through Transformative Solutions (DARTS) project, which was recently funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H) and announced as a major new initiative in the fight against Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) by US President Biden. The project seeks to deliver transformative technologies linking biotechnology, robotics, and automation to make a major step forward in the global fight against AMR.


As part of the DARTS project, this role will focus on developing an experimental pipeline to “fast-forward” bacterial evolution, eventually resulting in an automated approach that can be applied in clinical applications to predict how bacteria adapt in response to varying antibiotic treatment scenarios. This will require experience in bacteriology/ microbiology research, as well as some background in mathematical or bioinformatic techniques in areas such as genomics or evolutionary biology. As a Senior Postdoctoral Fellow, you will co-lead a biological research program and accompanying development of technologies that can be rapidly deployed to answer clinical questions and ultimately save lives.


The work of the Senior Postdoctoral Fellow will be varied and challenging, bridging laboratory and computational research disciplines while also interfacing with academic, clinical, and industrial users of technologies developed. You will work as part of an interdisciplinary team including experienced postdoctoral researchers, doctoral students, and the international DARTS team. There will be opportunities to travel internationally, collaborate with start-up companies and health-care professionals, and rapidly translate your work to enable future clinical technologies that support the global fight against AMR.


You should hold a PhD/DPhil in a relevant Biological Science, Medical, or Biotechnological field, together with significant research experience in biological laboratory work, particularly applied to working with prokaryotes. Proficiency in mathematical and bioinformatics methods suitable for analysing genomic data, especially DNA sequence analysis and manipulation are essential. You should be also willing to travel to site of project collaborators in Boston, USA, typically for one to two weeks. 


Informal enquiries may be addressed to Harrison Steel (email:


For more information about working at the Department, see


Only online applications received before midday on Wednesday, 3rd January 2024 can be considered. You will be required to upload a covering letter/supporting statement (including a brief description of how your experience fits the advertised position), a CV, and the details of two referees as part of your online application.


The Department holds an Athena Swan Bronze award, highlighting its commitment to promoting women in Science, Engineering and Technology.

Contact name

Prof Harrison Steel

Contact email