Research Assistant in Biochemical Opthalmology - AR1677SB
Vacancy Description
School of Medicine, Salary: £25,513 per annum, Start: As soon as possible, Fixed term for 24 months
An opportunity is available for a Research Assistant to work on an exciting collaborative research project in the field of biochemical ophthalmology funded by Fight for Sight. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a major cause of blindness that affects older adults (>50 years).  A characteristic feature of the ageing retina is the thickening of Bruch’s membrane and the formation of sub-retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) deposits that in some cases block metabolic exchange between the choroidal blood circulation and the retina.  This can lead to sensory retinal degeneration and in some cases eventually to AMD. Recently, the existence of small (0.5-20 μm diameter) protein-binding hydroxyapatite (HAP) spherules were reported within sub-RPE deposits isolated from AMD-affected individuals (see Thompson et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 112:1565-70).  This suggests that the spherules may provide nucleation sites for sub-RPE deposit formation, where the initiation, growth and retention of deposits are controlled by the binding of proteins present in the sub-RPE space to the spherules. In the funded study, HAP-binding proteins in the plasma of genotyped late-stage AMD patients will be isolated, quantitatively identified and biochemically characterised.

The position is for 24 months and the successful candidate should hold an honours degree in Chemistry, Biochemistry or a related subject and possess excellent communication skills and a high level of analytics. As part of this post they will maintain an active involvement in carrying out the planned research and communicating with other members of the team.
The University of St Andrews is committed to promoting equality of opportunity for all, which is further demonstrated through its working on the Gender and Race Equality Charters and being awarded the Athena SWAN award for women in science, HR Excellence in Research Award and the LGBT Charter;  http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/hr/edi/diversityawards/.

Please quote ref:  AR1677SB  

Closing Date:   31 July 2015 

Further Particulars: 
AR1677SB FPs.pdf

School of Medicine
Salary: £25,513 per annum
Start: As soon as possible
Fixed term for 24 months