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Head of Gene Editing & Embryology Core (GEEC)

Biological Services

London, Guy's Campus


  • Posted on: 25th Aug 2021
  • Salary: £56,060 - 64,405 per annum, including London Weighting Allowance
  • REF: 030825
  • Closes: 22nd September 2021
  • Contract Type: Permanent
  • Hours: Full Time

Job Description

The Genome Editing and Embryology Core (GEEC) provides state-of-the-art services for the generation and use of genetically altered animal models. The main focus of the facility is to apply and further develop in vitro and in vivo genome editing strategies, gene delivery via microinjections and electroporation, embryo transfer and cryopreservations. In addition, the GEEC provides practical advice for local and external researchers to help conduct cutting-edge research.

We are seeking an experienced individual to lead and manage the GEEC and provide genome editing and embryology services to the research community.

Key responsibilities will include the development of genetically altered animal models, embryology techniques and providing advice for researchers. Individuals with extensive experience in the use of CRISPR genome editing technology, as well embryo microinjection and manipulation are sought.

Management responsibility will cover all personnel who work this area. The post holder will need a flexible approach to work and be able to work independently and under supervision, as required, to deliver results in a timely and efficient manner. The individual must be willing to make use of IT systems to ensure accurate record keeping.

The GEEC was opened in 2017 and is embedded in the general Biological Services structure at King’s College London. It has an excellent track record for successfully generating mouse models for King’s researchers using CRISPR/Cas technology, including single point mutations, knock-outs, knock-ins and conditional alleles, as well as carrying out IVF, embryo transfers or cryopreservations. It is situated within a group of biomedical researchers with long-standing experience in genome editing applying ZFN, TALEN and CRISPR, across different research themes and animal species.

King’s College London is a world-leading university and one of Europe’s largest centres for biomedical, medical, and professional healthcare education. The large research portfolio spans across many different topics, including neuroscience, cancer research, cell biology, healthcare, or biomedical engineering. The GEEC therefore provides services to a large number of researchers.

This post will be offered on an indefinite contract.

This is a full-time post – 100% full time equivalent

Key responsibilities

  • Manage the Genome Editing and Embryology Core (GEEC) facility at KCL
  • Carry out and further develop cutting-edge molecular and cellular manipulations, including the generation of genome-editing tools for in vitro and in vivo applications or microinjections, and to supervise support staff assisting in these procedures
  • Provide a service for ES cell culture and injections
  • Act as the contact point for KCL faculty wanting advice on the optimum strategy for their research projects involving transgenics or genome-editing approaches
  • Supporting the BSU Manager in developing and providing any associated services required, such as rederivation, IVF and sperm/embryo freezing
  • Ensure advice on genotyping and efficient breeding schemes are provided to users
  • Liaise closely in a positive and cooperative manner with all Biological Services staff to ensure delivery of a fully joined-up service
  • Liaise closely with KCL faculty to ensure that the service provided is as required by the researchers.
  • Maintain a tracking system to allow KCL faculty users, BSU staff and the GEEC services team to monitor progress with individual projects
  • Provide accurate assessments of timescales for provision of services and ensure timely delivery
  • Ensure that the availability and costs of GEEC services are transparent and available to any KCL faculty
  • Provide appropriate training and advice to both faculty groups and BSU staff as required
  • Carry out regular monitoring of new practices within the field of transgenics and genome-editing technologies, including CRISPR/Cas9, and introduce these as appropriate to ensure provision of cutting-edge technology to KCL faculty
  • Carry out research to adapt new technologies to use in the provision of services to KCL faculty, for example to improve success rates for procedures for sperm freezing, IVF, gene targeting, or introduce iPSC targeting etc.
  • Read the scientific literature, attend scientific meetings and seminars, to keep abreast of latest developments in best practise and technologies
  • Pro-actively provide training sessions within KCL and to the wider research and animal technology communities
  • Provide continued training for support staff within the GEEC service team
  • Support other relevant KCL training courses
  • Teach on student courses as appropriate
  • Hold a personal licence under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986; and any other licence required by the research
  • Plan experiments to ensure effective use of animals (applying the 3Rs) and other resources.
  • Ensure full compliance of all the associated staff with all legislation and regulations.
  • Deal with multiple competing demands in a professional and fair manner.

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

Essential criteria

1. PhD in a relevant biological subject.

2. Outstanding knowledge of rodent and zebrafish genetics.

3. Extensive skills in genetic manipulation in vitro and in vivo.

4. Extensive experience and demonstrated success in the generation and application of genome-editing tools, such as CRISPR/Cas9 or TALEN.

5. Extensive experience in general molecular biology technologies, including PCR, vector cloning, DNA preparations.

6. Excellent management experience and success in interactions with other key staff.

Desirable criteria

7. Understanding of experimental design.

8. Experience and demonstrated success in providing a range of transgenics services, including blastocyst and pronuclear injections, cryopreservations and IVF.

9. Experience in generating DNA gene targeting constructs for ES cell work.

10. Experience in ES cell culture.

11. Experience in iPSC culture and editing.

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