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Laboratory Research Scientist

Posted by , on 20 September 2017

Closing Date: 15 March 2021



We are seeking a highly motivated and collaborative Laboratory Research Scientist in the area of human embryology and stem cell biology to join Dr. Kathy Niakan’s laboratory. The lab has identified several signalling pathways that may be operational in the human embryo to regulate the establishment or maintenance of pluripotent epiblast progenitor cells that can be coaxed to self-renew indefinitely as embryonic stem cells in vitro. The role will involve further characterising the function of these signalling pathways in the human embryo and testing their sufficiency to establish alternative human embryonic stem cells.


The successful candidate is likely to be collaborative, energetic, focused, and productive individual. Excellent organisational, analytical, and communication skills are essential.


Dr Niakan’s laboratory focuses on understanding the mechanisms of lineage specification in human embryos and the derivation of novel human stem cells. The post holder will report directly to the Group Leader, Kathy Niakan. Details of research projects currently being undertaken can be seen at:




The pluripotent epiblast of the early human embryo has the unique potential to give rise to the entire fetus in vivo and can self-renew indefinitely as embryonic stem cells (hESCs) in vitro. Understanding how this lineage is established is of fundamental biological importance and has significant clinical implications for both infertility treatment and the use of hESCs to treat various diseases. We have identified several components of key signaling pathways that are highly expressed in the epiblast, and whose activity leads to the proliferation of these pluripotent cells in vivo. Based on our preliminary data, we have been awarded an Insight to Innovate Grant to follow up these observations, in collaboration with commercial organisations.


The aim of this project is to further characterise how these factors regulate human pluripotency and embryogenesis. We also seek to establish novel culture conditions for human pluripotent stem cells by modulating these signaling pathways during stem cell derivation. In collaboration with our commercial partners, we will evaluate if these conditions better maintain pluripotency of existing hESCs, and how this may translate to improved derivation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) or more efficient directed differentiation protocols.


Please note: all offers of employment are subject to successful security screening and continuous eligibility to work in the United Kingdom.


To apply please visit


This role closes on  Wednesday 11th October 2017 at 23:30 pm.

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