Laboratory Technician

Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK


  • Posted on: 22nd Nov 2021
  • Salary: £22,254 - £23,487 with progression to £25,627per annum
  • REF: 14401
  • Closes: 10th December 2021
  • Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
  • Hours: Full Time

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

Salary: £22,254 – £23,487 with progression to £25,627per annum

Closing Date: 10 December 2021

The Role

We are looking for a highly motivated Research Technician to join our transplant regenerative medicine team with focus on diabetes. This opportunity is in an exciting environment including a cutting-edge human islet isolation laboratory, integrally interacting with world-leading clinical transplant programmes.

This research is funded by the Innovate UK Northern Alliance Advanced Therapies Treatment Centre ( You will work within the Newcastle University Regenerative Medicine, Stem Cells and Transplantation Research Theme (

You will undertake validation of novel diagnostic biomarkers of deceased donor islet and stem cell-derived beta-cell stress, proinflammatory signalling and cell death for implementation in the clinical islet / beta-cell replacement programme in Newcastle and nationally. These will include cell free DNA and exosomal miRNA / proteome. Samples will be obtained from cultured islets / beta-cells in vitro and patient blood. Results will be analysed in parallel with in vitro functional assays and clinical outcome measures to determine prognostic value. Systems for sustainable prospective quality assured sample collection and analysis within the integrated UK programme will be validated and piloted.

You will also involve handling and processing of donated human tissue including pancreatic islet isolation within the Transplant Regenerative Medicine Laboratories at the International Centre for Life.

You should have a BSc in a relevant subject or equivalent experience with technical expertise in molecular biology techniques. You should have experience working according to Standard Operating Procedures within a research laboratory setting. Good practical knowledge of aseptic cell culture techniques, willingness to work with human tissue within a tight regulatory framework, willingness to work flexibly and excellent organisational skills are essential.

The post is full time, fixed term for 6 monthinitially but with potential for extension subject to funding and performance.

For further information or an informal discussion please contact Professor James Shaw (

Key Accountabilities

  • Implement Standard Operating Procedures for processing anonymised blood samples obtained from deceased donors and patients undergoing alloislet, autoislet and stem cell transplantation for biomarker studies under existing ethical approval
  • Implement Standard Operating Procedures for collecting and processing secretome from isolated human islets in vitro for biomarker studies under existing ethical approval
  • Undertake cell free DNA and exosome extraction from blood and secretome samples
  • Coordinate DNA and RNA quality analysis / sequencing
  • Participate in human pancreas multimodal biopsy collection / immunostaining
  • Participate in human pancreatic islet isolation and islet quality control (QC)
  • Assisting in lab maintenance including lab cleaning, washing dishes and ordering materials. Assistance with and use of computer analysis in the interpretation of results from isolation and QC. Collation, collection, presentation and discussion of these results with members of the islet group and associated groups
  • Consultation with PI, lab manager and collaborators regarding the setting up of experimental systems and research apparatus
  • Preparation and collation of results for interpretation with academic and research staff
  • Monitoring the satisfactory operation of laboratory equipment and mains services, reporting any defects. Carry out basic preventative maintenance of equipment in relevant laboratory areas. Operation and operational maintenance in accordance with makers’ instructions of complex and sophisticated research apparatus, equipment and instruments for research and analysis purposes
  • Ensuring correct storage and handling of bio-chemicals and biological materials and organisms. Responsible for the safe disposal and storage of hazardous waste in accordance with local rules and legal requirements. Adherence to relevant safety rules, including assessment of risks, using relevant COSHH, BIOCOSHH, radioisotope, genetic manipulation, pathological specimen and potent carcinogen rules
  • Responsible to the PI and lab manager for the care and cleanliness of certain specified common user laboratory areas, facilities and / or equipment

The Person (Essential)

Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Good practical knowledge of sterile techniques
  • Good practical knowledge of molecular biology
  • Knowledge of Health and Safety in laboratories
  • Up to date and working knowledge of Microsoft office packages or equivalent
  • Experience as a technician working in a medium-sized group, reporting to lab manager, PI and Institute Safety Officer
  • Experience in developing SOPs and working in a tightly regulated environment
  • Experience as a technician participating in day-to-day lab management and supporting the core research team at all levels
  • Demonstrates well developed technical and problem solving capability in a high quality biomedical research environment
  • Demonstrates good practical laboratory skills in broad range of molecular biology techniques
  • Ability to work both in a team and independently, and collaborate and communicate with groups from different disciplines
  • Ability to prioritise and switch tasks at short notice, high degree of personal sense of drive and responsibility
  • Possesses good written, oral communication, intellectual and numeracy skills
  • Demonstrate good organisation, time management, data collection, analysis and presentation skills
  • Transferrable research skills between traditional life science disciplines
  • Experience in molecular biology research
  • Knowledge of GLP / GMP principles (Desirable)
  • Background in protein / RNA analysis techniques(Desirable)
  • Background in biomarker research(Desirable)
  • Background in biomedical research using human samples and tissues(Desirable)
  • Good practical knowledge of primary cell isolation / culture(Desirable)

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Ability to think critically and trouble-shoot/refine protocols and procedures
  • Ability to work under pressure and focus for 4-5 hours without interruption
  • Willingness to be flexible about hours of work to fit in with work


  • BSc or equivalent degree or equivalent experience

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society. We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.

The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.

We understand how important the full employment package is to our colleagues at Newcastle University and we are committed to providing a great range of benefits and discounts for all. You can learn more about what is available here on ourBenefitsWebsite page.

Requisition ID: 14401

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