Careers at Children's Cancer Institute
Research Assistant (Translational Tumor Biology)

Randwick - Sydney, Australia  
Employment Type:
Full-Time Fixed Term  
Translational Tumour Biology (TTB)
Supporting Documentation:

  • Innovative, collaborative and positive team-orientated environment
  • Modern, world-class facilities
  • Convenient Randwick location, close to transport


Children's Cancer Institute is wholly dedicated to putting an end to childhood cancer and is the only medical research institute in Australia solely dedicated to this cause. We don't just hope to do it – we will do it, and we're looking for the brightest minds to help us get there. Children's Cancer Institute provides the best possible environment for our staff to thrive in, with state-of-the-art facilities at the Lowy Cancer Research Centre, UNSW Australia – one of the leading cancer research centres in the world.

The Zero Childhood Cancer (ZCC) Program is a national trial being led by Children’s Cancer Institute, and Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital, to identify individual cancer therapy for children, adolescents and young adults with high-risk cancer where the expected survival rate is less than 30%. The objective of the program is to prolong survival and reduce treatment side effects. The data generated by the ZCC trial is globally unique for paediatric cancer.

This position will support the molecular work done by the Translational Tumour Biology laboratory, which studies the molecular and functional aspects of genomic lesions such as mutations and gene fusions. This includes the cloning and expression of these lesions in cell model systems, the development of functional genomic screens, test drug responses, and identifying potential drug targeting strategies. The work will include studies to dissect the signalling pathways regulated by these oncogenes using model cell lines, and where appropriate, other models such as patient derived xenografts.


Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Assist with the development and maintenance of cell lines with Dr Lauren Brown.
  • Undertake cloning and expression studies of new genomic lesions.
  • Assist with drug screens in the cell line models.
  • Assist with nucleic acid extractions, RNA sequencing experiments and other experimental procedures.
  • Assist with general laboratory management including contributing to ordering supplies, maintaining laboratory inventory
  • Achieve an outstanding level of competence in all aspects of experimental work
  • Contribute to quality publications
  • Assist with the training and guidance of students on a day to day basis
  • Involved in professional activities
  • Be involved in CCIA activities
  • Comply with regulatory guidelines (including OGTR and ethics) and Institute policies

Qualifications, experience and skills required:

  • Bachelor or Masters degree in a biological science.
  • Molecular cloning techniques are a core skill requirement. This includes the capacity to design strategies to isolate (by PCR) genes from patient cDNA samples, clone these into plasmids for expression in cell lines.
  • Familiarity with online genome/gene reference databases (e.g. UCSC, NCBI) and alignment tools (BLAT, BLAST)
  • Performing and analyzing Sanger sequence data (Sanger)
  • Perform a range of PCR experiments and independently undertake primer design, PCR set up and trouble shooting
  • Basic molecular biology and cloning including restriction digests and ligation, bacterial transformation, plasmid extraction, gel electrophoresis
  • Tissue culture and retroviral and lentiviral transduction
  • Some experience with flow cytometry would be an advantage but not required
  • Western blotting
  • Valued personal skills and attributes include strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a team, excellent listening, verbal and written communication skills, strong attention to detail and initiative. We also value a flexible attitude to work (being able to move between projects and support other laboratory members), some management skills and a capacity to help solve problems


This is an excellent opportunity to work in an inspiring workplace. You'll be rewarded with a friendly and professional flexible work environment, comprehensive on-campus facilities, competitive salary, salary packaging options, access to a leading EAP program and regular social activities. Join a group of dedicated people in a performance-driven environment to achieve success and discover what it's like to look forward to coming to work every day and make a real difference. We're looking for people who share our values of accountability, integrity and camaraderie, teamwork, sharing and excellence, success and satisfaction.

A detailed job description and additional information about Children's Cancer Institute can be found on our website at: We embrace diversity and encourage applications from people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

To apply, please click the 'APPLY' link and forward both your resume AND cover letter clearly addressing the qualifications, experience and skills required. Note: Applications will be reviewed prior to the closing date; which is dependent on the status of the recruitment process.