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Senior Research Associate

Requisition ID:  5241

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Fixed Term
Working Pattern:  Full Time
Posted Date: 


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: £41,526.00 per annum 

Closing Date:5 November 2020



The role


The Newcastle University Fibrosis Research Group (NFRG) (https://research.ncl.ac.uk/fibrosislab/) is internationally renowned for its research into inflammatory and fibrogenic mechanisms that underpin age-related chronic disease with recent high impact publications in Nature Medicine, Nature Communications and Gastroenterology. You will work on the mechanisms by hepatocytes in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) adapt their phenotype to promote liver fibrosis. Using novel in vitro experimental platforms for culture and manipulation of human ex-vivo tissues the project will adopt multi-omics approaches to determine epigenetic, transcriptomic and proteomic changes that result in the pathologies associated with NAFLD. The long-term goal of the project is to identify molecular targets for the design of novel therapies that prevent cirrhosis and liver cancer.
This a a full time, fixed term post available for the duration of 5 years. 


For informal enquiries contact: Prof Derek Mann (derek.mann@ncl.ac.uk).


As part of our commitment to career development for research staff, the University has developed 3 levels of research role profilesThese profiles set out firstly the generic competences and responsibilities expected of role holders at each level and secondly the general qualifications and experiences needed for entry at a particular level.



Key Accountabilities


  • The project, which is funded as part of an MRC MICA Programme Grant in collaboration with GSK, will involve determining the regulatory mechanisms that operate within hepatocytes in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) to enable these cells to adapt their phenotype to promote liver fibrosis. The individual will be expected to work independently on this research project using novel in vitro experimental platforms for culture and manipulation of human ex-vivo tissues. The project will adopt multi-omics approaches to determine epigenetic, transcriptomic and proteomic changes that result in the pathologies associated with NAFLD
  • The candidate will plan and lead on the delivery of key research projects in the NFRG groups focused on organ fibrosis (https://research.ncl.ac.uk/fibrosislab/)
  • Co-ordinate own work with that of others in Principal Investigator groups and Consortia, deal with problems that may affect the achievement of research objectives and contribute to the planning of the project(s)
  • Although working under the general guidance of the principal investigators, they will contribute ideas and develop appropriate methodologies and techniques for research, providing advice and support where required, and make desirable modifications to existing methods. Including developing and engaging in research methodologies that add to knowledge/understanding in the research area
  • Present information on research progress and outcomes to a Principal Investigator or groups overseeing the research project
  • Explain and disseminate research findings through publications and conferences
  • Write up results from own research activity and provide input into the research project’s dissemination, in whatever form (report, papers).
  • Lead on the preparation and writing of research papers and make significant contributions to group research papers
  • Work to deadlines and manage competing priorities
  • Will work with other researchers in a team and actively participate in collaborative research, initiating or participating in interdisciplinary/group collaborations
  • Develop own research proposals for independent research funding or, where funders do not permit this, make a significant contribution to the writing of collective bids
  • Undertake extensive reading and literature review to continue your further development as a future research leader in the field of fibrosis with a particular emphasis on chronic liver disease
  • Supervise research students to a successful outcome
  • Will provide leadership for students, technical staff and early career researchers in the laboratory spaces. In particular providing guidance and expert advice as required to any support colleagues and/or research students. Work with the support colleagues and, on occasions, with undergraduate and postgraduate students, and interact intellectually with other academic members of the Institute



The Person (Essential)


Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Detailed subject knowledge in the area of research
  • Experience in the biology of fibrosis with technical expertise that includes hands-on experience with the in vitro and in vivo models of fibrosis across multiple organ systems
  • High level of analytical and problem solving capability
  • Ability to communicate complex information with clarity and to encourage the commitment of others
  • Publication of high quality primary research on fibrosis in leading journals
  • Evidence of good communication and presentation skills


  • Understanding of statistical programs such as Graph Pad Prism
  • Bioinformatics experience and coding
  • Use of Endnote or other Reference Managers

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team
  • A strong desire to continue your development as a future research leader in the field of fibrosis with a particular emphasis on chronic liver disease
  • Good coordination, time management, analysis and presentation skills
  • Keep up to date with new / improved techniques, knowledge, skills and research
  • Possesses good written, oral communication, intellectual, numeracy and creative problem solving skills
  • Expectation and willingness for flexible working, including where required to work weekends and away from main laboratory site including national and international collaborative visits
  • Have a team scientist approach that enables the support of the work of colleagues and students, and to make contributions to the general upkeep of our working environments 



  • A PhD and previous experience in the research area required



Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff 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.




Requisition ID: 5241