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Post Doctoral Scholar, Calgary Prion Research Unit, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

Job ID: 27430

Updated: November 17, 2022

Location: Main Campus

We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region in Southern Alberta. The City of Calgary is also home to Métis Nation of Alberta, Region III.

Position Description

Area: Defining the zoonotic potential of chronic wasting disease
Duration: One year, with possibility of renewal 
Start date: Immediate
Salary: $50,000 to $55,000 CAD per annum, plus benefits

The Calgary Prion Research Unit in the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Calgary is accepting applications for a Postdoctoral Scholar in characterization of the zoonotic potential of chronic wasting disease (CWD), an expanding prion disease of cervids.

Job Description:
The focus of the project is on prion diseases, fatal and infectious neurodegenerative disorders of man and animals. Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is an expanding prion disease of deer and elk in Northern America and Scandinavia. The successful candidate will be responsible for overseeing a NIH-funded project to characterize the zoonotic potential of CWD. The group has provided evidence by transmission experiments to different transgenic mouse and rodent models that Cynomolgus macaques inoculated via different routes with CWD-positive cervid tissues produce infectious prions. The proposed studies will unravel the properties of these prions, how they will adapt to humans and which pathways are activated in brain cells and associated with clinical disease. Results from these studies will uncover the potential manifestation of CWD in humans, which is highly relevant for human health. Experimental models and techniques used will include transgenic mice, bank voles, primary cells, gene-edited cells, protein/immunoblot analysis, prion conversion and conformational assays, IHC, and single-cell RNASeq. 

The position is also responsible for the supervision and mentoring of undergraduate and graduate students, and participates in writing of papers, reviews, research reports and grant proposals. The Schatzl has a longstanding expertise in training highly qualified personnel. The initial appointment is for one year and is renewable for following years, contingent on satisfactory performance.

The successful candidate will have a recent PhD (or equivalent) in cellular or molecular biology, infectology, biochemistry, neuroscience or related areas. Demonstrated strength in the relevant experimental approaches, capability of team work, and clear interest in innovation should be expressed in the cover letter in relation to the proposed work.

  • At least 2 years of experience in wet lab research is required. 
  • Research activities in bio-safety level 2 environments and experience with infectious disease research are considered an asset.
  • Ability to work with hazardous chemicals, infectious agents and live animals is required.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills are essential to facilitate interaction with faculty, graduate students, staff and external stakeholders.
  • Continuous learning and development, and willingness to accept new challenges and assignments.
  • Ability to work independently as well as demonstrated teamwork skills, strong organizational, management, and excellent interpersonal skills is critical to success in the role.

Application details:  
Please email your application as a single .pdf document via email to [email protected]

All applications must include:

  • a cover letter including date of availability, suitability and motivation for the role, including a brief summary of past, current and future research interests and accomplishments;
  • a current curriculum vitae (CV);
  • the name and contact information including email addresses for at least two (2) referees who have knowledge of your research and academic experience. 

Application Deadline: Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.

Only those applicants selected for interviews will be contacted further. In accordance with Canadian Immigration requirements, priority will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada, although others are encouraged to apply.

Please review the Postdoc Eligibility Guidelines for more information prior to applying for this position.

Additional Information

The terms and conditions of employment are covered under the UCalgary and PDAC Collective Agreement. To find out more about postdoctoral scholar program at the University of Calgary visit our Postdocs website.  

To learn more about postdoctoral scholar opportunities at the University of Calgary and all we have to offer, view our Postdoc Careers website.

The University strongly recommends all faculty and staff are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


About the University of Calgary

The University of Calgary is Canada’s leading next-generation university – a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. Located in the nation’s most enterprising city, the university is making tremendous progress on its Eyes High journey to be recognized as one of Canada’s top five research universities, grounded in innovative learning and teaching and fully integrated with the community it both serves and leads. The University of Calgary inspires and supports discovery, creativity and innovation across all disciplines. For more information, visit

About Calgary, Alberta

Calgary is one of the world's cleanest cities and has been named one of the world's most livable cities for years. Calgary is a city of leaders – in business, community, philanthropy and volunteerism. Calgarians benefit from the strongest economy in the nation and enjoy more days of sunshine per year than any other major Canadian city. Calgary is less than an hour’s drive from the Rocky Mountains and boasts the most extensive urban pathway and bikeway network in North America.

The University of Calgary has launched an institution-wide Indigenous Strategy in line with the foundational goals of Eyes High, committing to creating a rich, vibrant, and culturally competent campus that welcomes and supports Indigenous Peoples, encourages Indigenous community partnerships, is inclusive of Indigenous perspectives in all that we do.

As an equitable and inclusive employer, the University of Calgary recognizes that a diverse staff/faculty benefits and enriches the work, learning and research experiences of the entire campus and greater community. We are committed to removing barriers that have been historically encountered by some people in our society. We strive to recruit individuals who will further enhance our diversity and will support their academic and professional success while they are here. In particular, we encourage members of the designated groups (women, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, members of visible/racialized minorities, and diverse sexual orientation and gender identities) to apply. To ensure a fair and equitable assessment, we offer accommodation at any stage during the recruitment process to applicants with disabilities. Questions regarding [diversity] EDI at UCalgary can be sent to the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion ([email protected]) and requests for accommodations can be sent to Human Resources ([email protected]).


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