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Job Req ID:  105220

Research Specialist

The Clinical Pharmacology Analytical Laboratory (CPAL) is a multi-disciplinary laboratory which focuses on the development and validation of genetic assays using PCR techniques for clinical implementation, biological sample collection and processing, and the development, validation, and implementation of bioanalytical assays to support clinical trials. We are seeking a Research Specialist that requires molecular biology experience and focuses on supporting pharmacogenetics (PGx) testing in accordance with a College of American Pathologists (CAP) accredited environment. This position will also involve maintaining standard operating procedures and interpreting laboratory results. Lastly, this position will involve participation in clinical trials, including the collection and processing of biological materials for molecular and/or pharmacologic analysis. This position focuses on supporting and maintaining laboratory equipment in the CPAL’s biological processing and molecular genetics areas.

Specific Duties & Responsibilities

  • Follow the practices of the lab with regard to maintenance of notebook, nomenclature for labeling datasets, and storage of laboratory documents in the appropriate areas (i.e. shared server folders).
  • Proficient in PCR-based techniques, including development of primers and targeted molecular probes.
  • Interpret and analyze data for large sample sets for molecular genetics and PGx studies.
  • Be compliant with CAP standards in the performance of PGx testing.
  • Assist in the collection of clinical samples at the point of collection.
  • Prepare biological samples for biochemical analysis.
  • Exercising independent judgment while participating in the planning of experiments, execution of research protocols, as well as the evaluation and interpretation of the results.
  • Provide general laboratory support, including general upkeep of laboratory (centrifuges, pipettes, etc.) and storage (freezers, refrigerators, etc.) equipment.
  • Utilize prior experience and comply with biohazard/radiation safety standards through proper handling and storage of hazardous chemical and biological agents, and radiation sources in the laboratory.
  • Participate in process improvement initiatives.
  • Assist in drafting or revising SOPs.
  • Prepare solutions, buffers, etc.
  • Attend and participate in weekly staff and division meetings, protocol and research related meetings and trainings, performance improvement and quality assurance activities, and other meetings as required or assigned.
  • Complete and maintain up to date documentation of compliance requirements indicated by the Johns Hopkins University and the Johns Hopkins Hospital, including but not limited to: JHM Research Compliance, HIPAA, Bloodborne Pathogens, Biohazard Precaution, and Radiation Safety.
  • Properly catalogue and transmit data using electronic software programs, including LDMS and Microsoft Excel.
  • Work with CPAL QA/QC Manager to ensure laboratory activities meet regulatory standards.

Essential Job Functions

  • Experience using universal safety precautions to protect self and co-workers.
  • Able to follow and adhere to existing Standard Operating Procedures (SOP).
  • Able to adhere to schedules and protocols.
  • Able to plan experiments and evaluate/interpret results.
  • Able to communicate with others in the lab, to seek help, make suggestions and express ideas as necessary.
  • Proficiency working with computers and various software applications, especially Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word, the World Wide Web and electronic mail.
  • Complete annual university biohazard/universal precaution/radiation safety training.
  • Monitor equipment performance and may perform routine maintenance or repairs.
  • Adhere to biohazard/radiation safety standards for the proper handling and disposal of potentially hazardous chemical and biological agents and/or radiation sources in the workplace.
  • Able to work as part of a research team.
  • Will be responsible for one’s own work.
  • Will have knowledge of the policies, procedures and practices necessary to conduct the work described above and an awareness of the role and importance of the position within the CPAL and its potential impact on the working unit.

Physical Requirements

  • Occasionally lifting, carrying objects weighing 20 lbs. or less.
  • Sharp focus to adjust vision when doing close work that changes in distance from eyes.
  • Finger dexterity required to manipulate objects with fingers rather than with whole hand(s) or arm(s), for example, using a keyboard.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor's Degree in Biology, Chemistry or related field.
  • One year laboratory experience performing relevant techniques.
  • Molecular biology experience
  • Master's Degree, with related graduate research, may substitute for experience to the extent permitted by the JHU equivalency formula.

Preferred Qualifications
  • 1-year experience with primer design, DNA extraction, PCR-amplification, and other molecular biology techniques.
  • Demonstrated organizational and time management skills with a high degree of attention to detail.
  • Ability to manage multiple and competing priorities.

Classified Title: Research Specialist 
Working Title: Research Specialist   
Role/Level/Range: ACRP/03/MA  
Starting Salary Range: 34,560 47,490, 60,410 
Employee group: Full Time 
Schedule: M-F 8:30-5pm 
Exempt Status: Non-Exempt 
Location: School of Medicine - East Baltimore Campus 
Department name: 10002806-SOM DOM Clinical Pharmacology 
Personnel area: School of Medicine 


Total Rewards
The referenced salary range is based on Johns Hopkins University’s good faith belief at the time of posting. Actual compensation may vary based on factors such as geographic location, work experience, market conditions, education/training and skill level. Johns Hopkins offers a total rewards package that supports our employees' health, life, career and retirement. More information can be found here:


Please refer to the job description above to see which forms of equivalency are permitted for this position. If permitted, equivalencies will follow these guidelines:
JHU Equivalency Formula: 30 undergraduate degree credits (semester hours) or 18 graduate degree credits may substitute for one year of experience. Additional related experience may substitute for required education on the same basis. For jobs where equivalency is permitted, up to two years of non-related college course work may be applied towards the total minimum education/experience required for the respective job.

**Applicants who do not meet the posted requirements but are completing their final academic semester/quarter will be considered eligible for employment and may be asked to provide additional information confirming their academic completion date.

The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check. Johns Hopkins is committed to hiring individuals with a justice-involved background, consistent with applicable policies and current practice. A prior criminal history does not automatically preclude candidates from employment at Johns Hopkins University. In accordance with applicable law, the university will review, on an individual basis, the date of a candidate’s conviction, the nature of the conviction and how the conviction relates to an essential job-related qualification or function.


The Johns Hopkins University values diversity, equity and inclusion and advances these through our key strategic framework, the JHU Roadmap on Diversity and Inclusion.


Equal Opportunity Employer

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.


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Accommodation Information

If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the Talent Acquisition Office at For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711. For more information about workplace accommodations or accessibility at Johns Hopkins University, please visit


Johns Hopkins has mandated COVID-19 and influenza vaccines, as applicable. Exceptions to the COVID and flu vaccine requirements may be provided to individuals for religious beliefs or medical reasons. Requests for an exception must be submitted to the JHU vaccination registry. For additional information, applicants for SOM positions should visit and all other JHU applicants should visit


The following additional provisions may apply, depending on campus. Your recruiter will advise accordingly.

The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.


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School of Medicine - East Baltimore Campus