Microbiologist
Battelle - Atlanta, GA

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Battelle is guided by a founding mission. We invest our knowledge, talents and resources, helping our customers achieve their most important goals. We apply scientific rigor and creativity, succeeding where others may fail and we invest in our communities, making the world better for generations to come. All of us share a common purpose: to solve the greatest challenges of today and tomorrow.

Our 22,000 employees work at the forefront of scientific innovation to tackle critical challenges in security, human health, manufacturing, energy and environmental management. Battelle’s work is grounded in the belief that science, technology and a passion for excellence can make industries more competitive and the world a better place.

Battelle is a world leader in science and technology research. Battelle’s Technical On-Site Professional Services (TOPS) is a part of the Energy, Health and Environment Business and provides laboratory support to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We are currently looking for a Microbiologist . This position is located in the Influenza Division (ID) of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD), CDC at the Roybal Campus in Atlanta, Georgia.

TOPS is working with HHS/CDC in supporting efforts for pandemic influenza preparedness. To improve the understanding of prevention and treatment of influenza it is necessary to improve the knowledge of anti influenza drugs. The biological assessment of virus susceptibility to anti-influenza drugs is conducted using enzyme activity inhibition assays and animal models. There are several modifications of the enzyme inhibition assays which could be used to detect drug resistant viruses. Their effectiveness to detect drug resistance in Influenza viruses will need to be evaluated. Anti-influenza drugs along with epidemiologic surveillance are essential components to increase pandemic readiness and response. TOPS is supporting CDC in research and development efforts to eliminate gaps in influenza control by increasing the tools available to clinical providers, public health laboratories and domestic and international partners, by monitoring influenza viruses through molecular technologies, incorporating laboratory surveillance with classic epidemiology and improving medical management to facilitate detection and control of new epidemic variants and provide complete and accurate information about influenza viruses posing a pandemic threat.

Position Summary:

Detection of influenza viruses resistant to FDA-approved and investigational anti-influenza drugs requires the use of phenotypic functional assays. The phenotypic assessment of virus susceptibility to anti-influenza drugs is typically conducted using neuraminidase activity inhibition assays. In addition, drug susceptibility assessment needs to be performed in animal models for influenza infection. Infection of mice and ferrets with zoonotic influenza viruses is carried out in a biosafety containment level 3 enhanced and may require vaccination with a smallpox vaccine.

The objective of this project is to prepare materials and supplies (viruses, media, reagents etc) needed to test drug susceptibility of influenza viruses in phenotypic assays and in animal models. It also requires assistance in handling animals, collecting specimens and delivering antiviral treatments to mice and ferrets.

Responsibilities:
  • Prepare components of neuraminidase inhibition assay (serial drug dilutions, buffers, etc.).
  • Conduct testing seasonal and zoonotic (e.g. avian H5N1) virus isolates in the neuraminidase inhibition assay using the NA-Fluor kit.
  • Organize laboratory supplies and dispose bio-hazardous material and chemical waste.
  • File paper records of assay data.
  • Assist in conducting experiments in mice and ferrets (light anesthesia, intranasal inoculation of virus, body weight measurement, drug delivery by various routes, etc.).
  • Analyze data and prepare standard reports using various computer software and Microsoft office, such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc.

THE FOLLOWING REQUIREMENTS MUST BE MET TO BE CONSIDERED FOR THIS POSITION:
  • BS with a strong background in laboratory science and handling infectious material
  • Previous experience in working with animals is desirable
  • Conformity to receive smallpox vaccination as a requirement for animal work experiments
  • Experience in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

BENEFITS:

Battelle’s competitive benefits program includes comprehensive medical and dental care, matching 401K, paid time off, flexible spending accounts, disability coverage, and other benefits that help provide financial protection for you and your family.

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