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    Opportunity: Computational Biochemist Project Scientist (#91297) @ Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory -- Berkeley, CA (US)
    Submitted by Bill Cannan; posted on Wednesday, November 04, 2020


    Lawrence Berkeley National Lab's (LBNL, Environmental Genomics & Systems Biology Division ( has an opening for a Computational Biochemist Project Scientist to join the team.

    In this exciting role, you will use isotope dilution analyses to study metabolite turn-over in the rhizosphere. Plants communicate with rhizosphere microbes by secreting root exudates to supply carbon nutrients. Bacteria and fungi are adapted to utilize carbon exudates and may even impact the secretion of these metabolites. While interactions between roots and microbes have been intensively studied, we know little about how root metabolites exchange control the plant nutrient acquisition. Advances in isotopic techniques now make it possible to trace the chemical exchange in the rhizosphere. We are aiming to investigate how the interaction of plant and rhizosphere microbes changes the plant nutrient acquisition using stable isotope assisted mass spectrometry technique.


    What You Will Do:
    • Develop and apply computational models for the rhizosphere organic nitrogen flux.
    • Develop and apply innovative mass spectrometry-based metabolite profiling approaches to investigate the metabolite exchange between plants and the rhizosphere microbiome.
    • Analyze and integrate results using advanced algorithms.
    • Publish scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals and present findings at seminars and conferences.
    • Collaborate with other members of the program project research team both internal and external to Berkeley Lab and develop new collaborations as appropriate to further the scientific goals of the Program.
    • Understand the principles of plant nutrient acquisition is foundational to low-input sustainable bioenergy feedstocks.


    What Is Required:
    • A few years of relevant experience beyond the highest customary degree in bioinformatics, biology, biogeochemistry, computational science, or related field.
    • Expertise in analyzing high-resolution mass spectrometry datasets using high throughput computational tools.
    • Expertise in analyzing large next-generation sequencing datasets using bioinformatics tools.
    • Expertise in developing computational models of isotope pool dilution data, preferably in MATLAB.
    • Expertise in using the isotope pool dilution technique to the determination of metabolic flux.
    • Expertise in using ecosystem fabrications (EcoFABs) devices for plant root exudation analysis.
    • Background in soil organic nitrogen stabilization mechanisms.
    • Strong track record in developing innovative experimental approaches.
    • Deep expertise in computational analysis and relevant experimental techniques for using the isotope pool dilution technique for the determination of metabolic flux.
    • Strong background in soil organic nitrogen stabilization mechanisms.
    • Proven ability to perform independent research and organize data for publication and presentations.
    • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with technical and scientific staff.
    • Ability to work independently and in a team environment.
    • Demonstrated strength and efficiency in technical writing.
    • Proven ability to perform independent research and organize data for publication and presentations.
    • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with technical and scientific staff.
    • Ability to work independently and in a team environment.
    • Demonstrated strength and efficiency in technical writing.
    • Ability to program in Python, MATLAB, and Perl.
    Additional Desired Qualifications:
    • Ph.D. in bioinformatics, biology, biogeochemistry, computational science, or related field.


    • This is a full time, 2 year, term appointment with the possibility of extension or conversion to Career appointment based upon satisfactory job performance, continuing availability of funds and ongoing operational needs.
    • Full-time, M-F, exempt (monthly paid) from overtime pay.
    • This position may be subject to a background check. Any convictions will be evaluated to determine if they directly relate to the responsibilities and requirements of the position. Having a conviction history will not automatically disqualify an applicant from being considered for employment.


    Salary is commensurate with experience.


    Work will be primarily performed at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA.


    Apply directly online at[...]89050 and follow the on-line instructions to complete the application process.

    Organization: EB-Environ Genomics & Systems Bio


    The posting shall remain open until the position is filled.


    JGI & Berkeley Lab: A View to Fuel Innovative Science in the Public Interest

    They say it's all about location and Berkeley Lab has it all: a view above the San Francisco Bay, cool breezes, and world-class multidisciplinary science within a diverse and respectful research ecosystem of 5,000 people. Nearly 90 years ago, Ernest Orlando Lawrence, the inventor of the cyclotron, brought physicists, biologists, engineers and mathematicians together in Berkeley above the University of California campus to tackle the most urgent scientific challenges. Today, after garnering 13 Nobel Prizes, Berkeley Lab has sustained and grown that tradition of open, interdisciplinary team science, exemplified by how the U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI) addresses the most pressing energy and environmental challenges using integrative genome science approaches. JGI takes up residence in the new, state-of-the-art Integrative Genomics Building (IGB) along with the U.S. Department of Energy Systems Biology Knowledgebase (KBase) to expand the frontiers of energy and environmental science in partnership with the worldwide community of researchers. Will you join us and be a critical part of our next ground-breaking discoveries?

    Berkeley Lab (LBNL, addresses the world's most urgent scientific challenges by advancing sustainable energy, protecting human health, creating new materials, and revealing the origin and fate of the universe. Founded in 1931, Berkeley Lab's scientific expertise has been recognized with 13 Nobel prizes. The University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.

    Working at Berkeley Lab has many rewards including a competitive compensation program, excellent health and welfare programs, a retirement program that is second to none, and outstanding development opportunities. To view information about the many rewards that are offered at Berkeley Lab – Click Here (


    Equal Employment Opportunity: Berkeley Lab is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. Berkeley Lab is in compliance with the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision under 41 CFR 60-1.4. Click here ([...]sters) to view the poster and supplement: "Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law."

    Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory encourages applications from women, minorities, veterans, and other underrepresented groups presently considering scientific research careers.

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