Employment Opportunity

Postdoctoral Research Associate

University of Virginia

Type: Research Associate

Primary Research Area: Cardiovascular Diseases

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, United States

Salary Range: $50,001 - $60,000

Submit CV, Resume or Application By: October 31, 2023


The Leitinger laboratory studies the regulation of immune cell-mediated inflammatory and metabolic responses in infectious and chronic progressive diseases including atherosclerosis, heart failure, diabetes and fatty liver disease. We are particularly interested in how tissue damage is translated into chronic inflammation and tissue fibrosis, and how oxidized phospholipids and other danger signals such as ATP or heme contribute to these processes. We use mass spectrometry and metabolomics to identify and characterize novel danger-associated molecules that can be used as biomarkers of disease progression. The overall goal of our research is to identify mechanisms that drive pathologies in chronic progressive diseases and to devise therapeutic strategies that either halt the progression to fibrosis and/or lead to resolution of the inflammatory response.

Our laboratory identified the function of oxidized phospholipids as immune-regulators and we first described the redox-regulatory macrophage phenotype “Mox” [Kadl et al., Circulation Research 2010]. Recently, we developed gene-therapy-based therapeutic approaches that target oxidized phospholipids to prevent chronic inflammatory tissue damage [Science Advances 8-28:eabn0050, 2022, PMID: 35857497]. Our lab identified Acetyl CoA Carboxylase (ACC) as a key enzyme regulating the inflammatory response in macrophages [Science Advances, 8-47:eabq1984, 2022, PMID: 36417534], providing an opportunity to investigate the link between lipid metabolism and inflammatory responses in immune cells.

The NIH-funded project will use genetic approaches, bioenergetics analysis, metabolomics and lipidomics to determine the role of lipid metabolism in the inflammation-driven metabolic response and the production of pro-resolving lipid mediators by macrophages and in murine models of bacterial infection.

The research associate is expected to lead their own projects, to collaborate on other projects and guide PhD students in their research. Funding from existing NIH training grants (competitive) is possible.The acquisition of additional extramural funding is encouraged. More info about the Leitinger Laboratory can be found at leitingerlab.com

Applicants must have a doctoral degree, preferably a PhD in biological or chemical sciences with 3 years of productive graduate research experience. Experience in at least one of these areas is preferred: cardiovascular biology, immunology, metabolism, animal models, cell biology, lipid biochemistry, mass spectrometry.

For more information, please contact:

Norbert Leitinger