Postdoctoral Scholar

The Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of California, Davis invites applications for four Postdoctoral Researchers.

Position Description

We are thrilled to announce the immediate availability of up to four (4) fully funded Postdoctoral Researcher positions in the joint laboratory of Drs. Daniel Starr and G.W. Gant Luxton. The Starr/Luxton Lab is a part of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology within the College of Biological Sciences at the University of California, Davis. We are looking to recruit passionate scientists (Ph.D. and/or M.D. required) who will spearhead our NIH- and Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group-funded efforts to understand how the nucleus enables cells to sense and respond to physical forces through a process known as mechanotransduction, which is essential for cellular differentiation, division, migration, and survival.

The selected candidates will work at the interface of biomechanical engineering, physical cell biology, and developmental genetics to address the following questions: 1) How are linker of nucleoplasm and cytoplasm (LINC) complexes assembled in the nuclear envelope?; 2) How do LINC complexes influence the assembly of functional nucleoli within the nucleoplasm?; and 3) How do LINC complexes control the mechanical properties of cells and tissues? To do this, the candidates will use a powerful combination of advanced microscopy, C. elegans genetics, machine learning, novel high- throughput CRISPR-based genome-wide screens performed in mammalian tissue culture cells, small molecule biochemical screens, and synthetic biology. The specific project to be pursued will be developed jointly by the candidates and PIs upon hiring. Furthermore, the selected candidates will be responsible for the organization of their notes, data, and analyses, the presentation of their findings at weekly lab meetings, the execution of basic lab maintenance jobs, and the creation of a positive working environment.

Importantly, impaired LINC complex-dependent mechanotransduction underlies the pathogenesis of the following human diseases: cancer, cardiomyopathy, muscular dystrophy, and neurodegenerative diseases. In addition, LINC complexes are required for the following basic cellular processes: DNA damage repair, meiotic chromosome pairing, migration, mitosis, and polarization. Therefore, a mechanistic understanding of mechanotransduction promises to advance multiple fields of cell biology as well as human health.

Basic Qualifications

Applicants must have a Ph.D. and/or M.D. in biochemistry, biomedical engineering, biophysics, cell biology, developmental biology, or a related field. In addition, applicants must have a proven track record of productivity with at least one first author publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Moreover, applicants will be proficient in one or more of the following areas: C. elegans developmental genetics, CRISPR-based genome engineering in mammalian tissue culture cells, in vitro biochemical assays, molecular manipulation of DNA (i.e. cloning), and quantitative imaging. They will also be proficient in the use of the following computer software: Ape or similar DNA-editing software; Microsoft Office (i.e. Excel, PowerPoint, and Word); and Prism or R. Most importantly, all applicants will be motivated to independently pursue and drive their project.

Salary Range

$53,460-$64,008 [100% annual], commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Position Available - Closing Date

For full consideration applications should be received by May 15th, 2021. Recruitment will remain open until filled.

Term of Appointment

This one-year appointment is based on the needs of the research project. Appointment may be extended upon satisfactory performance

To Apply

To apply, please go to the following link:

Applicants should submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and research plan. Applicants should also provide contact information for three references. All letters will be treated as confidential per University of California policy and California state law. For more information about the department, please visit the website:


Please direct questions to Dr. Daniel Starr, or Dr. GW Gant Luxton For examples of recently published research from the Starr/Luxton Lab, please visit: or


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, sexual orientation, gender nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, see:

Under Federal law, the University ofCalifornia may employ only individuals who are legally able to work in the United States as established by providing documents as specified in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Certain UCSC positions funded by federal contracts or sub-contracts require the selected candidate to pass an E-Verify check. More information is available

UC Davis is a smoke & tobacco-free campus ( If you need accommodation due to a disability, please contact the recruiting department.