The Diagnostic Laboratory at The Jackson Laboratory is seeking an incumbent with strong microbiology skills and knowledge to assure the health and well-being of our animal colonies by routine health monitoring for undesirable infectious agents. Our diagnostic program serves to monitor against potential disease outbreaks in the Production, Research, and Repository colonies, as well as verifying the health status of foster mothers used for rederivation of mouse strains by Reproductive Sciences. The Diagnostic Laboratory also performs environmental monitoring via microbiologic culture of mouse room swabs. This testing strategy includes necropsy, serology, microbiology, and parasitology. The Genetic Quality Control (GQC) Laboratory at The Jackson Laboratory serves to detect and eliminate contamination in the genetic background of all of our Production and Repository colonies by routine and investigative screening using a panel of molecular assays.
The incumbents described in this job description are crucial to the effective functioning of the Diagnostic & GQC laboratories. The work schedule for the incumbents is established based on operational demands and may fluctuate based on the changing needs of the two laboratories, and thus incumbents in these roles may be assigned to any of the testing areas (Necropsy, Serology, Microbiology, Parasitology, and GQC) as necessary.
The Diagnostic & GQC Technician works under general supervision, follows standard operating procedures and protocols, and maintains lab inventory by ordering supplies as needed. The Diagnostic & GQC Technician utilizes strong analytical and problem-solving skills and attention to detail to perform complex microbiological testing and molecular assays. The Diagnostic & GQC Technician is capable of trouble-shooting and identifying common problems and issues and assisting supervisor with their resolution.
Complete necropsy involves the visual observation of all the organs, a description of any lesions seen, and the use of proper necropsy procedures. Selection of abnormal tissues for histopathology, which includes trimming of tissues and submitting the tissues and appropriate paperwork to histology. Use of aseptic techniques for the procurement of tissue samples for microbiological testing, for molecular testing, and for parasitology. Obtain blood samples from caudal venous and arterial sites or cardiac puncture for serological evaluation.
Perform parasitological examinations for ectoparasites with the use of a dissecting stereoscope. Parasitological examinations for endoparasites are done visually and microscopically. Further, perform specialized testing (fecal floatations, tape tests, etc) as required.
Performance of Luminex, ELISA and IFA procedures. This involves dilution of samples, preparation of reagents, performance of the assay, operation and maintenance of sophisticated instrumentation, and interpretation of results.
Preparation and quality control of microbiological media and chemical solutions. Further, this involves performance of subcultures, setting up biochemical identification testing for microbes, operation and maintenance of sophisticated instrumentation, and performance of other microbiological assays as required.
Performs data entry in database used for animal health & genetic quality. May be required to produce standard and ad hoc reports required including, but not limited to, reports used for shipment of animals, utlized by veterinarians, investigators, and production managers.
Miscellaneous lab work:
Duties necessary for the processing of incoming samples and for maintenance of the laboratory, such as culturing uterus / placentas from Importation, filtration and culture of water for microbiological evaluation, dilution and inoculation of anaerobic specimens, and other samples that are submitted for testing. Logging autoclave monitoring data, proper disposal of biohazardous materials, operation of autoclave, preparation of buffers, etc. Sanitation of the laboratory areas including decontamination of biohazardous waste containers/areas as well as sweeping and mopping floors on a routine schedule.