Influenza Vaccine and COVID-19 Response Fellowship - Doctoral Degree - CDC


CLOSING DATE: April 29, 2021


JOB #: 17108

POSTED: March 24, 2021


*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

A fellowship opportunity is available with the Vaccine Preparedness Team within the Virology, Surveillance and Diagnosis Branch of the Influenza Division (ID), National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) located in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the major operation components of the Department of Health and Human Services. CDC works to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

The selected participant will play a critical role in the development of improved influenza vaccine candidate viruses and novel platforms for future vaccines. Under the guidance of a mentor, the participant will be involved in study design, data interpretation, manuscript writing and present research at national and international conferences.

The participant may have the opportunity to be trained in the following projects and the participant is encouraged to propose new projects to improve influenza vaccines:

  • Develop influenza vaccines with improved efficacy and/or immunogenicity using novel platforms and strategies
  • Develop methods for purification and analysis of proteins that will be used in influenza vaccine studies 
  • Develop methods for purification and analysis of RNAs that will be used in influenza vaccine studies 
  • Formulate proteins and RNAs with adjuvants or nanoparticles for vaccine studies in animals
  • Conduct vaccine safety and efficacy evaluations in small animal models (mice and ferrets) in BSL2/3E laboratories
  • Establish and maintain ties with a broad range of epidemiological and laboratory researchers inside and outside of CDC

Since the team is heavily involved in the CDC COVID-19 response, the participant is expected to start with multiple COVID-19 projects including antigenic analysis of SARS-CoV-2 variants and assessing interactions  (e.g., binding affinity) between SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoproteins and ACE2 receptors.

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Spring 2021

This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and CDC. The initial appointment can be up to one year, but may be renewed upon recommendation of CDC contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. The appointment is full-time at CDC in the Atlanta, Georgia, area. Participants do not become employees of CDC, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits

Additional Details:


The qualified candidate should have received a doctoral degree in one of the relevant fields. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.

Preferred skills:

  • Solid experience in at least one of the following areas: 
    • protein expression and purification
    • structure modeling and protein engineering
    • nanoparticles
    • immunology and antibody
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including contributing to co-authored scientific publications

The participant will present scientific findings at meetings and conferences both within and external to CDC.

Eligibility Requirements
  • Degree: Doctoral Degree received within the last 60 month(s).

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