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  • Research Associate Specialist
    East Baton Rouge Parish
    LSU AgCenter


    (This is a grant-funded, full time (40 hours/week) position starting 08/15/2023. Continuation will be dependent on funding as well as your job performance)

    Work Location:  Department of Plant Pathology & Crop Physiology, LSU AgCenter, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

    Position Description: The focus of research in the lab has been to enhance resistance of maize to Aspergillus flavus infection and aflatoxin contamination through host induced gene silencing (HIGS), and soybean to various fungal pathogens that cause major yield losses through application of double stranded RNA (SIGS). The responsibilities of this position include evaluating transgenic maize plants in elite background for aflatoxin resistance and yield potentials under field conditions, cloning various pathogen genes, producing dsRNAs of these target genes in E. coli, conducting independent, growth chamber, greenhouse, and field studies to evaluate the effectiveness of various dsRNAs in suppressing soybean fungal diseases, and helping to supervise and train graduate students and student workers to ensure a smooth operation of the laboratory, etc.

    Qualification Requirements: Bachelor's degree in plant biology, plant pathology or other related field. Molecular biology techniques, such as DNA, RNA, and protein isolation, molecular cloning, RT-PCR and other recombinant DNA techniques, are required. Master's degree in these fields preferred. Experience in managing field studies involving transgenic plants and hand-pollination of maize plants is a plus. Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication skills and a willingness and ability to interact and collaborate with other scientists are essential to the success of this position. A valid Louisiana State driver’s license is required at the time of appointment.

    Salary and Benefits:  Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. For detailed description of this position and benefits, please visit us at The LSU AgCenter has an attractive benefits package with a wide variety of benefit options, such as retirement, multiple medical insurance options, supplemental insurances, Tax Saver Flexible Benefits Plan, university holidays, generous annual (vacation) and sick leave benefits, Employee Assistance Program, and possible educational leave and tuition exemption for coursework at campuses of the LSU System.  Specific benefits depend on job category, percent of full-time and length of employment.

    Date Available:  Upon completion of the selection process.

    Application Deadline: June 30, 2023 or until the position is filled.

    Application Procedure:  Apply online at (or in Workday for internal applicants) by attaching cover letter detailing your qualifications, resume, official university transcripts, and three letters of reference. Paper, faxed or e-mailed application materials will not be accepted, except reference letters, which should be sent directly by email from your references to:           

    Dr. Zhi-Yuan Chen

    Department of Plant Pathology and Crop Physiology

    Louisiana State University Agricultural Center

    302 Life Science Building

    Baton Rouge, LA. 70803

    Office: (225) 578-1464

    Fax: (225) 578-1415


    Web site: and


    The LSU Agricultural Center is a statewide campus of the LSU System and provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


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