Position Description. The incumbent will work under the general supervision of a Team/Project Leader to support the USDA APHIS PPQ CPHST Beltsville Lab projects on developing and validation of molecular and biochemical methods or PT panels for diagnostics of regulatory plant pests/pathogens. As directed, the incumbent will conduct activities on next generation sequencing, or digital PCR, or development, evaluation, optimization and validation of molecular or serological assays, for screening and confirmatory identification of Oomycetes, fungi, bacteria, viruses or other plant pathogens. The incumbent will maintain culture, and document morphological (microscopy) and molecular (sequencing) characters of Oomycetes, fungi, bacteria, viruses or other plant pathogens. The incumbent will record details and results of experiments in an official laboratory notebook; enter data into computer programs; write data summary reports and research publications drafts. Work duties will also include any combination of the following general laboratory maintenance tasks: cleaning and maintaining glassware; preparing media and reagents; preparing agarose gels; restocking and maintaining supplies; autoclaving; operating and maintaining specialized equipment; maintaining greenhouse plants.
Please note that this position is located in Beltsville, MD.
Other Work/Responsibilities. The position will track reagents inventories and budget expenditures for the project; perform all research with adherence to the CPHST Beltsville Lab Quality Management System; and develop or revise work instructions or other QM documents. Complete all required technical, EEO and work safety training.
Other duties will also include any combination of the following general laboratory maintenance tasks:
•Cleaning and maintaining glassware
•Preparing media and reagents
•Preparing agarose gels
•Restocking and maintaining supplies
•Operating and maintaining specialized equipment
•Maintaining greenhouse plants Additional responsibilities of preparing the shipments for all of the PT programs, on specified schedule.
Incumbent assigned additional project on development of a method for a large-scale DNA preparation from PT panel material, in response to a growing demand for the HLB/P. ramorum reference material (validated positive controls) by the diagnostic labs. Responsible for the PT lab maintenance on a rotating basis, and the maintenance of the freeze-dry system. Help with other lab maintenance activities. Responsible for traceability files for both HLB and P. ramorum PT Material.