Research Associate

Queen's University

Research Associate – Physiology & Imaging Specialist

Accepting application from: April 16, 2018

Competition Number: J1217-0445

Position Title: Research Associate/Physiology & Imaging Specialist

Employee Group: Research, Grant & Contract

Job Category: Research

Department or Area: Medicine

Location: Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Salary: $58,454.00/Year

Grade: 08

Hours per Week: 35

Job Type: Permanent (Continuing)

Shift: 7 Monday – Friday

Number Of Positions: 1

Date Posted: April 16, 2018

Job Summary

Reporting to the Principal Investigator, the incumbent will be responsible for the maintenance and operations of the physiology and experimental therapeutics facilities at Queen’s CardioPulmonary Unit (QCPU) in the Biosciences Building and Botterell Hall. The key equipment in these facilities are the MILabs VECTor4CT system for PET/SPECT/CT imaging, the DigiGait, and other physiology equipment such as telemetry systems, anaesthesia systems, isolated heart/lung setups, and pressure-volume measurement systems. The incumbent designs and implements research plans that focus on the physiological assessment of rodent functional capacity, independently developing experimental approaches and adapting techniques and protocols as required. The incumbent will observe, record, interpret and present results, including contributing to, co-authoring, or authoring papers. The incumbent will work closely with many researchers with variable experience with the QCPU equipment, providing advice and guidance as required. The incumbent may design and build apparatus and systems to meet the needs of these research facilities and may participate in other special projects depending upon the nature of the position.

Job Description

Key Responsibilities:

  • Carry out research plans that focus on the physiologic assessments of rodent functional capacity, in which broad objectives are pre-defined, but experimental approaches are developed largely by the incumbent.
  • Provide expert advice to researchers regarding experimental workflow. Personal judgment and initiative is used in creating, testing and adapting protocols to meet the needs of the project and to test new hypotheses.
  • Independently operate equipment for researchers using advanced PET/SPECT/CT imaging skills and experimental skills in physiology, observe, and record results. May entail working with radioactive and hazardous materials, equipment, or animals. Prepare results for presentation and publication, as well as contributing to, co-authoring, or authoring papers. Analyze results using computer programs. Do background research such as literature searches.
  • Work with hazardous materials including radioactive materials, and adenoviral infected cells and animals. Ensure maintenance and upgrade of lab equipment and computers, and will be responsible for safe management of radioactive and hazardous materials.
    Maintain equipment, making upgrades/repairs when necessary. Stay current with literature in related fields as well as the technical advances and applications available for the instruments in the physiology and experimental therapeutics facilities. Organize operating schedule for the equipment.
  • Advise, guide and provide consultation on research using physiology equipment. Advise researchers on status of research, the proper use of experimental techniques and interpretation of results. Conduct training sessions to ensure that all staff rapidly attains an understanding of their research.
  • Manage facilities, including physical space and equipment. Install and ensure maintenance of instruments. Oversee safety and proper disposal of radioactive and hazardous wastes. Design and build apparatus and systems for research purposes. Troubleshoot and debug systems as required. Allocate lab resources and monitor budget. Manage day-to-day running of the physiology and experimental therapeutics facilities.
  • Monitor safety and conduct training seminars.
  • Act as liaison to outside agencies and other labs. Ensure the exchange of information and results in order to foster collaborative research efforts. Obtain new ideas and formulate hypotheses based on information gathered.
  • Undertake other duties or special projects as required in support of the unit or department.

About Queen’s University

Queen’s University is the Canadian research intensive university with a transformative student learning experience. Here the employment experience is as diverse as it is interesting. We have opportunities in multiple areas of globally recognized research, faculty administration, engineering & construction, athletics & recreation, power generation, corporate shared services, and many more.

We are committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcome applications from individuals from equity seeking groups such as women, racialized/visible minorities, Indigenous/Aboriginal peoples, persons with a disability, persons who identify in the LGBTQ+ community and others who reflect the diversity of Canadian society.

Come work with us!

Closing Statement

The University invites applications from all qualified individuals. Queen’s is committed to employment equity and diversity in the workplace and welcomes applications from women, visible minorities, Aboriginal Peoples, persons with disabilities, and persons of any sexual orientation or gender identity. In accordance with Canadian Immigration requirements, priority will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

The University provides support in its recruitment processes to applicants with disabilities, including accommodation that takes into account an applicant’s accessibility needs. Candidates requiring accommodation during the recruitment process are asked to contact Human Resources at

Closing Date: May 7, 2018

Required Qualifications: • Masters degree in a relevant field, and several years of experience in operating PET/SPECT/CT imaging systems and other physiology equipment. PhD considered an asset.
• Thorough understanding of biology and expertise in the areas of physiology and small animal imaging.
• Extensive expertise in the operation and troubleshooting of experimental workflow and instruments.
• Extensive experience with trouble-shooting protocols and data interpretation.
• Familiarity with health and safety, radiation safety and other compliance standards.
• A publication track record in these fields is desired.
• Consideration will be given to an equivalent combination of education and experience.
Special Skills: • Expertise in operating PET/SPECT/CT imaging systems and other physiology equipment.
• Technical proficiency in the use of complex lab equipment and skill in the use of precise instruments. Appropriate handling of samples and specimens. Careful and critical observational skills.
• Developed computer skills to aid in the research, analysis and presentation of data.
• Organizational, problem-solving, and analytical skills. Judgment in choosing best protocol or adapting procedures to meet changing needs.
• Ability to handle animals a must. This includes expertise in anaesthetizing rodents, sterile techniques, and compassionate care and treatment in accordance to ethical guidelines.
• Care in handling radioactive and hazardous materials, operating equipment, and preparing solutions and samples. Foresight in predicting problems and altering procedures as required to minimize risks.
• Ability to work independently and as a team member, exercise sound judgment.
• Interpersonal and communication skills (verbal and written) to deal with staff, colleagues, other labs and departments, and outside agencies.
• Ability to adapt quickly to changing circumstances and make accommodations.
• Previous experience in teaching staff and students in laboratory techniques and interpretation of data.
Decision Making: • Determine optimum protocols, methods and approach to employ in experimental investigation.
• Modify experimental methods and approach independently to meet investigational goals.
• Decide how to answer questions regarding research projects and redirect questions to other researchers in the
field if necessary.
• Develop and implement cost recovery model for physiology laboratory services offered at QCPU.
• Determine best way to interpret and present data in order to meet the needs of the researchers and outside agencies.
• Decide what to do when encountering an unexpected problem while operating equipment, and when problem is serious enough to contact supervisor.
• Determine which equipment needs to be repaired, replaced, or acquired. Research and make a recommendation regarding supplier or manufacturer.
• Determine design and specifications of new experimental apparatus.
• Determine appropriate action to handle emergencies (e.g. loss of power to major refrigeration systems, water leaks on to sensitive equipment etc.). The incumbent must be able to recognize potential biohazard or chemical risk and take appropriate preventative measures.
• Determine appropriate way to dispose of radioactive and hazardous wastes within safety guidelines and react in an emergency situation to minimize damage.
• Prioritize time and resource use to coordinate workflow on project.
• Determine work priorities within established deadlines.