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Post Doctoral Research Fellow

North Dakota State University
Fargo, ND
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Teacher / Professor
Job Type
Full Time

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Position Information

Description & Details:

We seek a Post doctoral Research Fellow to join the Geddes lab in the Department of Microbiological Sciences at North Dakota State University. The Postdoctoral Research Fellow will be engineering synthetic nitrogen-fixing symbiosis in members of the cereal microbiome . This will involve assembly and refactoring of minimal symbiotic gene clusters 1 and transfer to diverse phylogenetic backgrounds 2 . Selection of appropriate chassis for engineering 3 will involve applying high throughput approaches including the use of acoustic liquid handling and fluorescence activated cell sorting to the culturing end engineering of members of the cereal microbiome . This work will build on previous successes 4 towards engineering a suitable rhizobium symbiont for nitrogen fixing cereals, engineered in the future for compatibility with root nodule symbiosis 5 .

The researcher will join a large, dynamic group and be involved in mentoring several graduate students in experimental design and manuscript preparation. There will also be opportunities to develop independent lines of research with an eye to the establishment of an independent research group.

The search will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Review of applications will begin November 1 5 , 2023, with an anticipated start date in early 2024.

  • Geddes, B. A., Kearsley, J., Huang, J., Zamani, M., Muhammed, Z., Sather, L., Panchal, A., diCenzo, G., and Finan, T. M. 2021. Minimal gene set from Sinorhizobium ( Ensifer ) meliloti pSymA required for efficient symbiosis with Medicago . Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 221 (2) e2018015118.
  • Ryu, M-H., Zhang, J., Toth, T., Khokhani, D., Geddes, B. A., Garcia-Costas, A., Mus, F., Peters, J. W., Poole, P. S., Ané, J-M., and Voigt, C. A. 2020. Control of nitrogen fixation in bacteria that associate with cereals. Nature Microbiology . 5: 314-330
  • Geddes, B. A., Ryu, M., Mus, F., Garcia Costas, A., Peters, J. W., Voigt, C. A., and Poole, P. S. 2015. Use of plant colonizing bacteria as chassis for transfer of N 2 -fixation to cereals. Current Opinion in Biotechnology. 32: 216-222
  • Geddes, B. A., Paramasivan, P., Joffrin, A. M., Thompson, A. L., Christensen, K. E., Conway, S. J. T., Oldroyd, G. E. D., and Poole, P. S. 2019. Engineering transkingdom signaling in plants to control gene expression in rhizosphere bacteria. Nature Communications . 10: 3430
  • Mus, F., Crook, M. B., Garcia, K., Garcia Costas, A., Geddes, B. A., Kouri, E., Parmasivan, P., Ryu, M., Oldroyd, G. E. D., Poole, P. S., Udvardi, M., Voigt, C. A., Ané, J. M. and Peters, J. W. 2016. Symbiotic nitrogen fixation and challenges to extending it to non-legumes. Applied and Environmental Microbiology . 82 (13): 3698-3710

  • Work Schedule:

    Full time

    Advertised Salary:

    50,000 -55, 000

    Minimum Qualifications:

    PhD (or nearing completion) in Synthetic Biology, Microbiology, Plant Sciences, Plant Pathology, Biology, Biochemistry or related life sciences

    Preferred Qualifications:

    Experience applying high throughput approaches in synthetic biology

    Experience with advanced molecular cloning

    Experience with fungal/bacterial genetics and engineering

    Experience with genome sequencing and comparative genomics

    Applicant Materials Required:

    Cover letter


    List of two references


    NDSU offers a comprehensive benefits package which includes single or family health insurance coverage with premiums paid for by the university - with an effective date for new employees the first of the month following date of hire. Other benefits include: wellness benefits, basic life insurance, retirement plan, tuition waiver, annual leave, EAP, sick leave and holiday pay. Optional benefits include: supplemental life, dental, vision, long-term care insurance, flexible spending account, and supplemental retirement plans.

    About Us:

    North Dakota State University is distinctive as a student focused, land-grant, research university. We educate leaders who solve national and global challenges by providing affordable access to an excellent education that combines teaching and research in a rich learning environment.

    NDSU is in the highest Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, R1, granted to the top research institutions in the country.

    NDSU has offices across the state of North Dakota, and the main campus is in Fargo, on the Minnesota border. Along with Moorhead, Minnesota, Fargo forms one of the largest metropolitan centers between Minneapolis and Seattle. The community is consistently ranked as one of the best places to live.

    No Smoking Notice :

    As an employer, the State of North Dakota prohibits smoking in all places of state employment in accordance with N.D.C.C. § 23-12-10.

    EO/AA Statement:

    North Dakota State University is an Equal Opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, gender expression/identity, genetic information, marital status, national origin, participation in lawful off-campus activity, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, public assistance status, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, spousal relationship to current employee, or veteran status, as applicable.

    Diversity Statement:

    NDSU strives to be a community of belonging, recognizing unique differences as strengths of our university. We seek to recruit and retain a diverse workforce that supports a community in which diverse populations and perspectives will know and learn from one another. NDSU values candidates who are committed to our core values of respect, inclusivity, community, creativity, excellence, impact, innovation, integrity, resilience, responsiveness, and transformation. Successful candidates will be committed to and help advance our strategic goal to create and maintain an open and respectful environment to promote inclusivity and diversity as a cornerstone of education, research, and outreach.

    Veteran's Preference Notice:

    This position is subject to North Dakota Veteran's Preference requirements.

    Reasonable Accommodation Information

    North Dakota State University is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation in the application process, please contact Human Resources at 701-231-8961 or .

    Land Acknowledgement

    We collectively acknowledge that NDSU, a land grant institution, on the traditional lands of the Oceti Sakowin (Dakota, Lakota, Nakoda) and Anishinaabe Peoples in addition to many diverse Indigenous Peoples still connected to these lands. We honor with gratitude Mother Earth and the Indigenous Peoples who have walked with her throughout generations. We will continue to learn how to live in unity with Mother Earth and build strong, mutually beneficial, trusting relationships with Indigenous Peoples of our region. (see ).


    NDSU is recognized as one of the nation’s top 108 public and private universities.

    North Dakota State University is an employer of choice with a commitment to offer a well-rounded benefits package for employees and their families.

    NDSU is listed at 95 among 404 public universities based on the university’s research expenditures reported to the National Science Foundation. In addition, NDSU is listed in the National Science Foundation’s top 100 in several areas, including: agricultural sciences; business management and business; communications; materials science; natural resources and conservation science; social sciences; sociology, demography, and population studies; and visual and performing arts.

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