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Research Fellow: AAV Gene Therapy of Chronic Pain

Company name
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research

Rochester, MN
12 hit(s)  


Job Description:









Why Mayo Clinic

Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Gene Therapy of Chronic Pain

A new position in the field of AAV gene therapy and translational pain research is available for a highly enthusiastic Postdoctoral Fellow or Research Associate to lead research under a new 5-year NIH grant that was recently awarded to our team (PI Beutler, $3.2 million 2017-2022).

The candidate will focus on AAV vector development and optimization and be a member of a multidisciplinary team. Testing of clinically applicable pain treatment strategies are performed in large animal models with a strong emphasis on advancing the use of AAV as analgesic treatment strategy through preclinical development. The expertise of the PI laboratory includes modeling clinical neurosurgical procedures and the use of sophisticated image-guided gene vector delivery to the spinal compartment in swine (using computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging). The PI laboratory recently established an interinstitutional collaboration on the usage of cutting edge AAV vector development and optimization methods with the group of Dr. Nakai at OHSU. The candidate for the open position will therefore have additional collaborative career development options by interacting with one of the worlds leading centers in the development of novel AAV technology.

In terms of training and career goals, the PI will work with candidates on individual career development plans that may include the training in advanced career skills such as grant writing for NIH and regulatory work with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Future career goals for the applicant (towards the end of a multi-year training period in the Beutler lab) may include a transition to independence as a new PI or the potential of partaking in scientifically related entrepreneurial activities (contingent upon successful achievement of academic milestones).

The Beutler laboratory team brings specialists from different backgrounds together to focus on the research challenge of chronic pain. Our analgesic drug development philosophy focuses on combining, first, molecular specificity such as encoded by novel therapeutic genes, and, second, anatomical specificity such as achieved by targeted delivery to individual spinal nerves (see also Pleticha, Maus, Beutler, 2016, PMID 27046525). The lab is co-directed by a Mayo interventional pain specialist who also serves as President of an international medical society. The PI (Beutler) holds an appointment (with full privileges) in the Translational Science Tract at Mayo Graduate School and is an Associate Professor and Consultant (with a part time clinical commitment) in the Departments of Anesthesiology and Oncology at Mayo Clinic (

116 million Americans suffer from chronic pain at a cost of $560 billion/year. Opioid medications have been used as a mainstay to treat patients with chronic pain. However, opioids are often ineffective and, most concerning, their widespread use has contributed to a drug abuse epidemic. 18,893 Americans died from prescription opioids in 2014 and 1.9M were addicted. Chronic pain is therefore an area of high demand for the most ambitious research talents to invent novel analgesics.

Position description

A Research Fellow at Mayo Clinic is a temporary position intended to provide training and education in research. Individuals will train in the research program of a Mayo Clinic principal investigator. Qualified individuals will demonstrate the potential for research as evidenced by their training and peer-reviewed publications and should become competitive for national research grants. Proof of English proficiency is required for J-1 Short-Term Scholars, Research Scholars, Professors, Specialists, and Student Interns sponsored by Mayo Clinic. 800146; J2WRTP


Must have a Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree in a field deemed relevant by the program. Please attach the following required documents at the time of application:

1. Current curriculum vitae and bibliography

2. Cover letter addressing how the applicant's training background, personal interests, and future career ambitions fit with the program.

Please, also email these documents directly to

Additional qualifications

The successful candidate should have a Ph.D. or equivalent. A published track record in AAV gene therapy and/or neuroscience research is required. A prior training focus on AAV vector biology and in vivo gene transfer would be ideal. Additional experience in the neurobiology of the peripheral nervous system, spinal cord, sensory systems, or pain would be helpful but not required. Experience in microscopic tissue analysis and knowledge of advanced microscopy techniques is desired (stereology, 3D reconstruction, concurrent detection of multiple markers by fluorescent- or laser scanning microscopy). Comprehensive laboratory-based experience and a very solid background in molecular biology techniques is required (DNA, RNA, protein, tissue, tissue culture; analytical and preparatory techniques) such as methods to construct and analyze AAV vectors in vitro and in vivo.

Benefits eligible



Full Time

Site description

Mayo Clinic was ranked #1 in the 2016-2017 Best Hospitals ranking by U.S. News and World Report ( Mayo offers a solid basic research environment with an emphasis on research that is poised to transform the practice of medicine through innovation. Mayo has also been recognized by FORTUNE magazine as one of the top 100 Best Companies to Work For.

Mayo Clinic is located in the heart of downtown Rochester, Minnesota, a vibrant, friendly city that provides a highly livable environment for more than 34,000 Mayo staff and students. The city is consistently ranked among the best places to live in the United States because of its affordable cost of living, healthy lifestyle, excellent school systems and exceptionally high quality of life.


Postdoc & Temporary Research

Career profile

Post Doctoral Research



Job posting number



Kara Schott

Equal opportunity employer

Mayo Clinic is an equal opportunity educator and employer (including veterans and persons with disabilities).


Company Profile
Mayo Clinic has major campuses in Rochester, Minn.; Scottsdale and Phoenix, Ariz.; and Jacksonville, Fla. The Mayo Clinic Health System has dozens of locations in several states. To inspire hope and contribute to health and well-being by providing the best care to every patient through integrated clinical practice, education and research.These values, which guide Mayo Clinic's mission to this day, are an expression of the vision and intent of our founders, the original Mayo physicians and the Sisters of Saint Francis.

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