Postdoctoral Researcher - Gerencser lab

Postdocs Novato, California


The Gerencser lab at the Buck Institute seeks a Postdoctoral Researcher to study mitochondrial signaling in type 2 diabetes (T2D). Dr. Akos Gerencser’s laboratory uses cell biology, advanced microscopy, and single-cell gene expression techniques to address fundamental questions about mitochondrial function in health and aging. A current emphasis is the regulation of mitochondrial function in pancreatic β-cells in human type 2 diabetes. This position is focused on wet-bench experimental work and related data analysis using time-lapse microscopy of human primary cell cultures and their genetic or pharmacological manipulations to address mechanistic questions.  

Altered cellular energetics and related cellular signaling contribute to human disease in general and physiological aging and chronic diseases in particular, including cancer, neurodegeneration, ischemic heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. Mitochondrial metabolism also plays a central role in insulin secretion in pancreatic β-cells. The project investigates the molecular pathways that make healthy β-cell bioenergetics – and insulin secretion – normally highly responsive to glucose, and pathways that may fail in type 2 diabetes. Relevant papers from our lab to this project are PMIDs 26204464, 27404273, and 27771512. The project uses microscale bioenergetic assaying of human primary β-cell cultures, including mitochondrial membrane potential and Seahorse cell respirometry assays, assessment of β-cell physiology, and top-down analysis of cellular energy metabolism. Good knowledge of cellular metabolic pathways is important. 

The successful candidate will use a fully motorized microscopy system, and optionally a high throughput robotic liquid handling, CRISPR-Cas9 knockout, and electroporation. You will receive training in the experimental technologies used in this project, design and conduct experiments, and analyze data. You are expected to lead your own project, write up, and present results. 

Essential Requirements 

  • Ph.D. in biological or biomedical sciences, bioengineering, or bioinformatics
  • Solid knowledge of cell and mitochondrial metabolism
  • Cell culturing experience
  • Wet bench experience
  • Data analysis using spreadsheets
  • Proven publication record
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to prioritize and manage your time
  • Ability to work independently and successfully within a group

Desired Skills 

  • Cell or mitochondrial respirometry
  • Fluorescence microscopy
  • Experience in β-cell physiology or in diabetes
  • Proficiency in metabolic modeling
  • Experience in RNAi or CRISPR methods
  • Familiarity with laboratory automation


  • The starting salary for a new postdoc is $70,000 in 2024, with a range up to $82,000 commensurate with postdoc level and experience.
  • Exciting, dynamic work environment at the forefront of science using state-of-the-art techniques.
  • Generous benefits package including health insurance, paid parental leave, childcare assistance, generous vacation/sick leave, and 401(k) with 5% employer match.
  • Collaborative environment – both for science and social activities.

Our success will ultimately change healthcare. At the Buck, we aim to end the threat of age-related diseases for this and future generations by bringing together the most capable and passionate scientists from a broad range of disciplines to identify and impede the ways in which we age. We are an independent, non-profit institution located in Marin County, CA, with the goal of increasing human healthspan, or the healthy years of life. Globally recognized as the pioneer and leader in efforts to target aging—the number one risk factor for diseases including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, cancer, macular degeneration, heart disease, and diabetes—the Buck seeks to help people live better longer. We are an equal-opportunity employer and strive to create an atmosphere where diversity of identity, experience, and background are welcomed, valued, and supported. Candidates who contribute to this diversity are strongly encouraged to apply. 

Multi-user core equipment facilities including the Microscopy Core (directed by Dr. Akos Gerencser), Bioinformatics Core, Flow Cytometry Core, Single Cell Genomics Core, Proteomics Core, Metabolomics Core, Mouse Phenotyping and Behavioral Core support our research. 

Please apply online by submitting your CV along with a cover letter describing your research interests and contact information for 2 references.  

Akos Gerencser MD. Ph.D.
Director of the Morphology and Imaging Core
Associate Research Professor
T: (415) 209-2273
[email protected]