Job Title: Postdoctoral research candidate
Job Number: 67945
Location: Dallas, US
Job Title: Postdoctoral Fellow in Host-Microbiota Interactions
Location: UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas
Position Type: Full-time
Application Deadline: rolling basis
About UT Southwestern Medical Center
UT Southwestern in Dallas, Texas is one of the nation’s premier academic medical centers, integrating pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution’s faculty has received six Nobel Prizes and includes 24 members of the National Academy of Sciences, 18 members of the National Academy of Medicine, and 14 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigators. The full-time faculty of more than 2,900 is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide care in more than 80 specialties to more than 100,000 hospitalized patients, more than 360,000 emergency room cases, and oversee nearly 4 million outpatient visits a year. The Dallas – Ft. Worth metroplex is the fourth largest in the nation, offering cultural diversity, affordable housing, and a strong economy, making it a desirable place to live and work.
The Department of Pediatrics at UT Southwestern Medical Center welcomes applications for a Postdoctoral Fellow position under the mentorship of Dr. Xin Li, Assistant Professor in Pediatrics and Immunology. Dr. Li’s innovative work explores the intricate mechanisms by which gut commensal bacteria and fungi influence local and systemic immune responses in health and disease.
At UT Southwestern, we are deeply committed to cultivating an inclusive and diverse research community. As a Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Xin Li’s research group, you will embark on a journey where you can make significant contributions to groundbreaking research in host-microbiota interactions. Our group’s recent work has been pivotal in unraveling the intricate connections between the gut and distal organs. For instance, we discovered that fungal sensing by tissue-resident CX3CR1+ mononuclear cells in the gut can exert a profound influence on distal allergic airway disease. These specific immune cells transmit signals to the lungs, setting the stage for pioneering investigations into the mechanisms underlying gut-lung immune crosstalk (Li et al., Cell Host and Microbe, 2018; Leonardi, Li et al., Science, 2018).
In a recent study (Li et al., Nature, 2022), Dr. Li illuminated the critical role of microbial strain diversity in shaping inflammatory immunity. Through meticulous analysis of diverse fungal strains and their associated fungal factors, we identified a compelling correlation between high levels of the fungal pore-forming toxin, candidalysin, and the severity of ulcerative colitis. Replicating these findings in murine colitis models, we pinpointed candidalysin as a pivotal pore-forming toxin that mediates niche-specific inflammatory immunity. These findings underscore the paramount importance of personalized approaches in the development of microbiome-based therapeutics.
In 2023, Dr. Li joined the faculty at UT Southwestern in the Departments of Pediatrics and Immunology. Dr. Li’s research harnesses cutting-edge techniques in microbiology and immunology, leveraging a diverse array of model organisms, including bacteria, fungi, mice, and humans. Through these innovative approaches, his research endeavors to uncover fundamental insights into the intricate mechanisms governing how gut commensals intricately regulate inflammatory immune responses within the intricate landscape of host-microbe interactions.
Key Research Directions:
Identifying novel host factors involved in bacterial and fungal sensing to regulate inflammatory diseases.
Exploring new microbial factors, including pore-forming toxins and other toxins, involved in bacterial and fungal sensing to regulate inflammatory diseases.
Investigating how microbe sensing of host-derived factors in the gut controls microbial commensalism and pathogenicity.
Utilizing fungi as a model system for genetic engineering of microbial effectors to understand how microbes dictate protective and pathogenic immunity at tissue barriers.
Ph.D. in a relevant field (Immunology, Microbiology, Molecular Biology, Genetics, Biochemistry or a related discipline).
Strong research background and a demonstrated interest in host-microbiota interactions.
Experience in microbiological (genetics) and immunological techniques is highly desirable.
Excellent communication skills and the ability to work collaboratively within a diverse research team.
Competitive salary and benefits package.
Access to state-of-the-art research facilities and resources.
Opportunity to collaborate with a dynamic research team led by Dr. Xin Li, where diversity of thought and background is valued.
Engagement in cutting-edge research with potential for high-impact publications.
Professional development and career advancement opportunities.
“UT Southwestern Medical Center is committed to an educational and working environment that provides equal opportunity to all members of the University community. UT Southwestern prohibits unlawful discrimination, including discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, disability, genetic information, citizenship status, or veteran status.
UT Southwestern Medical Center is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity and inclusion. We encourage applications from candidates of all backgrounds, including those from underrepresented groups, and individuals with disabilities.
Interested candidates should submit the following application materials:
Cover letter detailing your research interests, qualifications for the position.
Curriculum vitae (CV) including a list of publications.
Contact information for three professional references.
Ideally, A brief research statement (1 page) outlining your proposed contributions to Dr. Li’s research directions, this can be included in the cover letter.
Please submit your application to [Please click the Apply button for the link or email].
Join us in advancing our understanding of host-microbiota/microbe interactions and their impact on inflammatory diseases.
Application Deadline: 2024-04-13