Job Description

Payroll Title:
Hiring Salary Range
$49,987 - $56,000/year
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
RX Contract
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
8 hrs/day, Mon-Fri

#111539 Staff Research Associate

Extended Deadline: Fri 10/8/2021

For the safety and well-being of the entire university community, the University of California requires, with few exceptions, that all students, faculty and staff be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus before they will be allowed on campus or in a facility or office. For more information visit:

UCSD Layoff from Career Appointment: Apply by 9/7/21 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 9/17/21. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.


Physics is a prominent, highly-ranked, and research-intensive department at UC San Diego, with 400+ employees, annual expenditures of roughly $30M, annual course enrollments greater than 16K, and over 140K square feet of space in 8 campus buildings. Research and instructional activity occurs over an unusually broad range of disciplinary areas, including: astrophysics & astronomy, atomic/molecular physics, biophysics, condensed matter physics, controlled fusion & plasma physics, elementary particle physics, nanoscience, and nonlinear dynamics.

Research activity occurs both on-campus and in multiple off-campus locations, including: U.S. National Laboratories such as Argonne, Lawrence Livermore, and LANL (Los Alamos National Lab); observatories throughout the world; Antarctica; and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) in Switzerland. Research collaborations frequently involve other U.S. and international universities, National Labs, research institutes such as The Scripps Research Institute and the Salk Institute; and/or companies such as SAIC and General Atomics. Sponsored research activities are funded by 40-50 different funding agencies, including NSF, NIH, DOE, DOD, and AFOSR, and include complex multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional, and multi-PI awards. Instruction occurs at multiple levels. With approximately 170 students, the doctoral program has a flexible and broad-based curriculum which leads to a Ph.D. in Physics or Physics with optional specializations in Biophysics, Computational Science or Quantitative Biology. With nearly 500 Physics majors, the undergraduate major program is one of the most productive in the nation. Students may obtain B.S. degrees with optional specializations in Astrophysics, Biophysics, Computational Physics, Earth Sciences, or Materials Physics, or B.A. degrees with an optional specialization in Secondary Education. A special 5-year contiguous program leading to a B.S./M.S. in Materials Physics is also available. Lower division courses allow students to satisfy their general education requirements and serve as foundational courses for students majoring in the sciences and engineering.

The laboratory of Dr. David Kleinfeld, Professor of Physics, is a biophysics and neuroscience laboratory interested in the neuronal control of vascular and neuronal function. Specifically, one particular direction focuses on anatomy This includes the complete three dimensional reconstruction of the mouse brain vasculature, as well as preparation of brain samples for histological and in situ hybridization analysis for a digital active atlas of the brain.

The incumbent will perform a wide variety of standard laboratory procedures and technical duties without detailed technical supervision, that range from tissue and reagent preparation through image acquisition and analysis, and record keeping. Although the incumbent will be under general supervision, they may also modify, or adapt research procedures to better meet the needs of the research projects to which they are assigned. The successful applicant must be willing to work with animals and to prepare samples for histology. Tasks include, but are not limited to:

i.) Maintenance of breeding schedules for the laboratory mouse colonies.

ii.) Transportation and housing of animals from vivarium to laboratory.

iii.) Preparations of solutions for perfusions and histology.

iv.) Maintenance of all histological and anatomical supplies.

v.) Performance of perfusions and preparation of specialized histological samples.

vi) performance of stereotaxic injections.

vii.) Cryostat section of brain samples using the Cryojane method.

viii.) Stain samples of brain tissue for whole brain imaging.

ix.) Operation of a Zeiss AxoScan high-throughput slide scanner and indexing of all data for cloud storage, analysis, computing.

x.) Analysis of histological samples using manual through semi-automated procedures, e.g.,Neurolucida.

xi.) Help with derivation of new procedures for stabilizing tissue, clearing tissue, and staining tissue.

xii.) Maintain a comprehensive lab notebook.

xiii.) Communicate research findings in regular lab meetings.

xiv.) Completing Laboratory Maintenance and Safety courses as required by EH&S and IACUC.

  • Must be willing to work with animals. Must be willing to work with and dispose of animal carcasses, chemical and biohazardous waste.

  • Must be willing to handle and be present around hazardous chemicals and materials. Must be willing to work with replication of incompetent viruses.


  • Trained to handle and care for rodents or small animals.

  • Experience in perfusions and dissections in rodents or small animals.

  • Experience in measuring and weighing chemicals and preparation of solutions.

  • At least 2 years of experience in Neuroscience laboratory setting.

  • Histological sectioning with a cryostat and sliding microtome.

  • Experience with a stereotaxic animal holder and coordinates.

  • Experience with stereotaxic intracranial injections.

  • Theoretical understanding of physics, neurobiology, molecular biology, chemistry or related field generally acquired through a Bachelor's and/or Masters degree in a related science (or engineering field); or an equivalent combination of education and relevant lab experience.

  • Reasonable communication skills to work with researchers at all levels (postdoc, grad student, undergrad student) in laboratory operations.

  • Prior knowledge of Neuroscience and Chemistry.

  • Demonstrated organizational skills and attention to detail in a laboratory setting.

  • Ability to maintain confidentiality of matters related to work.

  • Knowledge/understanding and at least some experience with Safety Data Sheets, hazard communication and Injury and Illness Prevention Program. Willingness and ability to keep safety training current and consistent with research involvement.

  • Demonstrated understanding of the importance of ensuring an equitable, inclusive, and diverse working environment, with the ability to work as a part of a diverse and collaborative team. Demonstrated competency and commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion.


  • Background check will be required upon hire.

Job offer is contingent on successful engagement in the UC COVID-19 Vaccination program (fully vaccinated with documented proof or approved exception/deferral).

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, gender identity or sexual orientation. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

UC San Diego is a smoke and tobacco free environment. Please visit for more information.

Application Instructions

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