Molecular Pathology Technologist


Salinas, CA


Quality Assurance

JOB SUMMARY: Conduct specific routine molecular seed health assays, as assigned, and record results. Assist with non-routine PCR based research projects and other pathology issues as necessary. Isolate and store plant pathogens and perform cleanup duties. Assist in other pathology activities, as requested.


  • Conduct routine molecular seed health assays, evaluate results and record data.  Assay methods include extraction of pathogens from seed, ELISA, DNA & RNA extraction, PCR, gel electrophoresis, and RT-qPCR.
  • As requested, assist in pathology research and investigations, primarily non-routine PCR assays including fingerprinting, PCR for sequencing, sequence analysis, evaluation of new assays, etc.
  • Communicate test results.
  • Ensure that the molecular seed health lab is clean and organized, lab equipment is in proper working condition, and supplies are adequate
  • Use computer applications (e.g., CFX Manager, LIMS) for various work-related tasks (e.g., sample entry, data entry/analysis/retrieval, reporting results).
  • Work with pure plant pathogen cultures while preventing contamination (i.e. “Aseptic technique”) and help maintain the culture collection.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Basic knowledge of chemistry, math and biology.
  • Familiarity with molecular biology, specifically PCR and associated techniques.
  • Good oral and written communication skills and good organizational skills.
  • Ability to learn new techniques and procedures, and to learn to operate state-of the-art technical equipment.
  • Ability to develop excellent laboratory skills in microbiology and molecular biology.
  • Ability to quickly adapt and be receptive to changing work demands, techniques, and/or approaches.
  • Able to do accurate and detailed work under time constraints and deadlines, and able to adjust to seasonal surges in workload.
  • Ability to do routine and repetitious work for several hours in the laboratory or greenhouse.
  • Must be able to train and lead personnel in specified technical applications.
  • Ability to work both independently and in a team.
  • Accuracy, efficiency, good dexterity and visual acuity are critical.
  • Competency in data management and use of computer applications.
  • Willingness to take on a wide variety of tasks and duties.
  • Ability to handle stress especially when encountering necessary projects, deadlines and/or high workload.


  • Bachelor’s degree in microbiology, biology or related field.


  • Employment-related laboratory experience required, lab experience in an academic environment is acceptable.
  • Experience with PCR or similar molecular protocols is strongly preferred.


  • Must be able to work with laboratory chemicals, pesticides, and other possibly irritating substances.
  • Must be able to wear personal protective equipment (e.g., gloves, respirator, and lab coat) when necessary and/or required.
  • Must be able to stand, sit and/or bend for several hours at a time.
  • Must be able to do some lifting of lightweight (< 40 lbs.) items.

*To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty (as described above) satisfactorily. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.

To apply, send resume to