First listed on: 14 January 2022

CSIRO Postdoctoral Fellowship in Pathogen Profiling of Mice


Acknowledgement of Country

CSIRO acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land, sea and waters, of the area that we live and work on across Australia. We acknowledge their continuing connection to their culture and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. View our?vision towards reconciliation.

The Opportunity

  • Do you have a PhD in veterinary microbiology or pathogen genomics?
  • Join Australia’s leading team in understanding and developing management strategies for tacking mouse plagues!
  • Join CSIRO – Australia’s leading scientific research organisation!

CSIRO Early Research Career (CERC) Postdoctoral Fellowships provide opportunities to scientists and engineers who have completed their doctorate and have less than three years of relevant postdoctoral work experience. These fellowships aim to develop the next generation of future leaders of the innovation system.

CSIRO has an exciting opportunity for a CERC Fellow to join the Rodent Management Team which is leading Australia’s efforts in understanding and developing management strategies for tacking mouse plagues. Effort focusses on monitoring and forecasting mouse populations, improving control strategies, and understanding mouse ecology and behaviour in no-till farming systems. Mouse forecast models are very good at predicting increases in mouse abundance, but very poor in predicting when a population “crash” will occur. We know that disease plays an important role in this “crash”, but neither the pathogens involved nor the epidemiological dynamics of disease progression through populations are currently understood.

A new area of work that emerged during the mouse plague that affected much of NSW in 2021 is the role and impact of diseases in mouse populations.

Given recent advances in disease profiling using mRNA sequencing (metatranscriptomics), there is strong interest from industry and government to screen mouse populations for a range of diseases and parasites to better understand the role of disease in influencing population dynamics, the disease risk posed to humans and livestock, and to inform development of potential options for improved control.

Your duties will include:

  • Design and carry out disease profiling (metatranscriptomics) studies (wetlab and drylab) to better understand how diseases influence the population dynamics of mice, the potential zoonotic disease risk to humans, disease risk to livestock, and provide information to improve forecasting models of mice in Australian cropping systems.
  • Assist with the experimental design and sample collection. Assist with collection of samples from the field and assist with communication of findings to end-users and stakeholders (growers and the grains industry). 
  • Liaise with clients to determine their needs and take personal responsibility for client satisfaction.
  • Under limited direction, assist in the planning and preparation of research proposals and carry out research investigations, requiring originality, creativity and innovation. 
  • Present results in a meaningful format, prepare reports for clients and/or write scientific papers for publication.  
  • Address problems promptly and in a constructive manner, selecting the most profitable lines of attack upon a problem, preparing detailed design proposals and experimental protocols. 
  • Undertake experimental and/or observational research activities, often requiring the supervision and/or training of others to ensure experiments are established in accordance with research design, or as required.

Location:  Black Mountain, ACT
Salary:   AU$89k - AU$98k plus up to 15.4% superannuation
Tenure:   Specified term of 3 years
Reference:  80892

To be considered you will need:

  • A doctorate (or will shortly satisfy the requirements of a PhD) in a relevant discipline area, such as veterinary microbiology or pathogen genomics.  Please note: To be eligible for this role you must have no more than 3 years (full-time equivalent) of postdoctoral research experience.
  • A current Australian manual driver’s licence or the ability and eligibility to obtain an Australian manual drivers licence.
  • Demonstrated wet-lab expertise, such as experience with nucleic acid extraction, PCR, sequencing library preparation, Illumina and/or Nanopore sequencing.
  • Demonstrated bioinformatics experience in analysis of large datasets (with an emphasis on pathogen discovery) and phylogenetics. 
  • High level written and oral communication skills with the ability to represent the research team effectively internally and externally, including the presentation of research outcomes at national and international conferences.
  • A sound history of publication in peer reviewed journals and/or authorship of scientific papers, reports, grant applications or patents.
  • Demonstrated ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary team, and carry out independent research to achieve project goals.
  • A record of science innovation and creativity, including the ability and willingness to incorporate novel ideas and approaches into scientific investigations.

For full details about this role please view the Position Description


To be eligible for this role, you must be an Australian/New Zealand Citizen, Australian Permanent Resident.

The successful applicant will be required to obtain and provide a National Police Check or equivalent. Additional integrity checks may be required for specific roles which require security clearance for working with children, Australian Government cybersecurity requirements or other identified security roles.

Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. 

Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit people representing the diversity across our society, and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. 


At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!

How to Apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.

Applications Close

13 February 2022, 11:00pm AEDT

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