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SMALL RNA TRAFFICKING
Discover, characterize and adapt mechanisms of small RNA extracellular and intracellular trafficking for development of novel classes of oligonucleotide drugs.

 A serious limitation in realizing the potential of oligonucleotide based therapies has been the exceedingly inefficient transit of oligonucleotides from outside cells to the intracellular compartments where the biologically relevant activity happens.  On the other hand, there are multiple lines of evidence supporting the notion that nature has implemented evolutionarily conserved mechanisms and pathways for efficiently trafficking small RNAs across cellular boundaries. The objective of future studies will  be the systematic evaluation of mechanisms of cellular uptake of different classes of oligonucleotides and their comparison to mechanisms of  native RNA trafficking using a combination of experimental approaches, including advanced RNA chemistry and high temporal and spatial resolution microscopy in living cells, Mass spectrometry, cell biology and others.  The successful candidate will work closely with Victor Ambros and Silvia Corvera labs and the UMASS imaging group and receive training in RNA chemistry, biochemistry, cell biology and pre-clinical development.

QUALIFICATIONS:Applicants must have (or expect to obtain shortly) a Ph.D. in Chemistry, Organic Chemistry Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Molecular Biology or a related field , be bright, ambitious,  independent and collaborative and ideally,  have research experience in nucleic acid molecular and cell biology

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RNAI MEDICINAL CHEMISTRY/ RNA OLIGONUCLEOTIDE CHEMISTRY
Develop and characterize novel RNA chemistries to promote efficient oligonucleotide internalization and tissue distribution.

Oligonucleotides represent a new class of drugs, which have the promise to become a major class of future therapeutics. There are several chemistries and formulations developed by us and others that effectively support oligo internalization and favorable PK/PD. In most cases in vivo efficacy is limited by (1) poor PK (2) inefficient tissue distribution (3) compound entrapment in biologically inactive intracellular compartments.
The objective of future studies will be development of novel chemistries, which promote receptor mediated cellular internalization and/ or endosomal escape. The successful candidate will be responsible for the design and synthesis of novel RNA precursors, optimization of RNA synthesis and conjugation protocols and interface with the biology part of the lab. In addition, exposure to pre-clinical development programs and oligonucleotide manufacturing will be available.

 QUALIFICATIONS: Applicants must have (or expect to obtain shortly) a Ph.D. in Chemistry, Organic Chemistry Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Molecular Biology or a related field , be bright, ambitious, independent and collaborative and have previous experience in nucleic acid / oligonucleotide chemistry.

Post Docs

POSTDOCTORAL POSITION: RNAI PRECLINICAL DEVELOPMENT
Excellent training opportunity for a person considering industrial carrier in drug development
 
Oligonucleotides represent a new class of drugs, which have the promise to become a major class of future therapeutics. There are several classes of oligonucleotides which can efficiently silence genes in various tissues with acceptable level of toxicity. There are also new chemistries being developed to further improve oligonucleotide tissue distribution and cellular uptake.
The successful candidate will be a key part of an intra-disciplinary team working with biologists and chemists to develop novel types of therapeutics for treatment of neurological disease, liver disease and orphan indications. The work will include compounds identification, screening, characterization, in vivo efficacy and PK/PD studies, novel assays development etc. In addition exposure and training in nucleic acid pre-clinical development, project management etc will be provided.

QUALIFICATIONS: Applicants must have (or expect to obtain shortly) a Ph.D. in Chemistry, Organic Chemistry Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Molecular Biology or a related field , be bright, ambitious,  independent and collaborative and ideally,  have research experience in nucleic acid molecular cell biology or pharmacology.

Rotation Projects Our laboratory uses a combination of nucleic acid and oligonucleotide chemistry, biochemistry, cell biology, and pharmacology and develops and evaluate novel technologies for development of oligonucleotide therapeutics. A rotation project is available to develop and identify chemically modified self-delivering RNAi compounds for treatment of Huntington and other diseases.

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