Research Associate in Epigenomics (Imperial)

Vacancy Reference Number
Closing Date
2 Feb 2022
£41,593 – £49,210 plus benefits
UK Dementia Research Institute, Department of Brain Sciences, Imperial College London, White City Campus
Full Time & Fixed Term post offered initially for 12 months, with potential for extension.

Dementia is the biggest health challenge of our century.

To date there is no way to prevent it or even slow its progression, and there is an urgent need to fill the knowledge gap in our basic understanding of the diseases that cause it.

The UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI) is the biggest UK initiative driving forward research to fill this gap.

The UK DRI at Imperial brings together researchers from diverse backgrounds with fresh perspectives, drawing on the university’s unique strengths, resources and focus on science, engineering, medicine and business. The team recognises that the challenges of dementia demand new concepts, new approaches and a diverse range of new research tools and directions. Their holistic approach views the ageing brain in the context of the ageing body, not in isolation.

The laboratory of Dr Raffaella Nativio at the UK DRI at Imperial is seeking a bright, talented, highly motivated, and ambitious postdoctoral scientist to lead one or more projects investigating basic mechanisms of epigenetic regulation and their involvement in aging and age-related neurodegeneration.

While aging is the top risk factor for neurodegeneration, the underlying mechanisms have remained unclear. The epigenetic state has been implicated in aging and lifespan of lower organisms and thus may play a pivotal role in age-related neurodegeneration. We previously identified histone posttranslational modification changes associated with healthy aging or Alzheimer’s disease (Nativio et al., Nature Neuroscience, 2018; Nativio et al., Nature Genetics, 2020). Next, we aim to investigate the epigenetic pathways, that by modulating environmental, metabolic and genetic risk, predispose or protect from neurodegeneration during the course of aging. Give the association of genetic risk variants with long-distance regulatory elements, such as enhancers, we will also explore the role of genome conformation in aging and neurodegeneration.

The successful candidate will be familiar with the biology of epigenetic regulation and proficient in using genomic/epigenomic approaches (ChIP-seq, RNA-seq, ATAC-seq, CUT&RUN, CUT&Tag, HiC or HiChIP), gene editing tools (CRISPR/Cas9 or CRISPRi/CRISPRa), and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) or embryonic stem cells (ESCs) culture systems.


Duties and responsibilities

  • To take initiatives in the planning of research
  • To actively participate in the research programme of the Group
  • To plan and conduct own scientific work, with appropriate supervision
  • To identify and develop suitable techniques for the collection and analysis of data
  • To conduct data analysis
  • To ensure the validity and reliability of data at all times
  • To maintain highly organised, accurate and complete records of all experimental work
  • To present findings in regular group meetings to the PI and colleagues
  • To prepare and present reports
  • To present findings to colleagues and at conferences
  • To submit publications to high quality, refereed journals
  • To provide guidance to staff and students, providing supervision as required
  • To attend relevant workshops and conferences as necessary
  • To participate in Group/Centre research meetings and internal seminars
  • To develop contacts and research collaborations within the College, the UK DRI and the wider community


Essential requirements

  • Research Associate: Hold a PhD (or equivalent) in Biological Sciences (e.g., Molecular Biology, Biochemistry) or a closely related discipline, or equivalent research or industrial experience
  • Research Assistant: Near completion of a PhD (or equivalent) in Biological Sciences (e.g., Molecular Biology, Biochemistry) or a closely related discipline, or equivalent research or industrial experience
  • Practical experience within a research environment and/or publication in relevant and refereed journals
  • Practical experience in a broad range of genomics/epigenomics techniques including ChIP-seq, ATAC-seq, RNA-seq, CUT&RUN, CUT&Tag, chromosome conformation capture-based methods such as 3C, HiC and HiChIP
  • Demonstrable experience with cell culture models including cultures of primary neurons and iPSC-derived neurons, microglia or astrocytes

**Please note this is a re-advertisement; previous applicants need not apply.**


Contact Details

Should you have any queries please contact Dr Raffaella Nativio at