Research Scientist | Dunn Lab – (3236721)

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The Dunn Laboratory in the Center for Genomic Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) is seeking a motivated, enthusiastic candidate to join our research group in the role of Research Scientist.

Dr. Dunn is a social and psychiatric epidemiologist with expertise in genetics, epigenetics, and childhood adversity. Children and families also know her as the Science Tooth Fairy, given her work with baby teeth ( and The Dunn Lab is based in the MGH Center for Genomic Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, and Department of Pediatrics. Studies in the Dunn Lab are broadly focused on: (1) genomic, transcriptomic, and epigenomic predictors of susceptibility to later mental health issues, with a focus on depression; (2) understanding the developmental effects of exposure to childhood adversity on risk and resilience for psychopathology; (3) life course perspectives for modeling gene-environment interplay, or how genetic variation modifies the effect of exposure to childhood adversity on downstream phenotypes; and (4) biological markers of future risk as captured in exfoliated primary teeth.  We collect data ourselves and also partner with some of the largest birth cohort studies (and collaborators) worldwide to analyze secondary data. Some current projects in the lab include:

Two NIMH-funded R01 studies that focuses on integrating longitudinal data with insights from genetics, epigenetics, and human development to examine the developmental causes and consequences of DNA methylation (DNAm) on risk and protective factors for depression in adolescence and young adulthood.  We are studying both European and non-European participants.

A set of projects exploring the use of exfoliated primary teeth as novel biomarkers of exposure to stress and subsequent risk for mental health problems.


The successful candidate will be a results-focused, team-oriented, and creative scientist who is able to excel in a very fast-paced and multidisciplinary research environment. Candidates must be self-motivated, detail-oriented, and exhibit strong problem-solving skills. In addition, the successful candidate should be a clear and effective communicator, demonstrating strong interpersonal skills to enable collaboration with project teams, peers, and management in identifying and achieving research goals. Applicants will have a PhD in a relevant field with backgrounds in multiple disciplines, including but not limited to epidemiology, public health, genetics, and epigenetics.

To be considered for this role, please include a tailored cover letter (addressed to Dr. Dunn) outlining prior experiences that fit with the requirements of this role and why you think you would be a good addition to the Dunn Lab. 



  • Oversee the day-to-day research operations of the lab with respect to:
  • The design, implementation, and completion of research activities, including study conceptualization, primary and secondary data collection, analysis, and reporting.
  • Providing scientific and career development mentoring to varying levels of staff (i.e., fellows, analysts, project staff).
  • Participate in grant writing, including identification of research grants, conceptualizing study aims and analysis plans, assembling grant components.
  • Writing scholarly manuscripts and other materials to communicate research findings for scientific and non-scientific audiences.
  • Effectively present results in cross-functional project teams. Disseminate research findings internally at MGH and Harvard as well as at national and international conferences.
  • Work with team to design and execute research plans to ensure that critical project requirements, timelines, and deliverables are met.
  • Troubleshoot and solve scientific problems independently.
  • Identify, investigate and implement new technologies based on scientific needs.
  • Design, execute, and interpret research experiments.
  • Assist in laboratory management.
  • Work closely with Dr. Dunn to strategically plan scientific endeavors.



  • Excellent publication record
  • A proven record of successful interactions within multidisciplinary teams.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and productively.
  • Strong research design and analytical skills, with demonstrated ability to problem solve.
  • Strong teaching skills and ability to supervise trainees and students.
  • In depth knowledge of field of research






  • Minimum Required: Doctoral Degree
  • Field of Study/Additional Specialized Training:  Field similar but not limited to epidemiology, public health, genetics, or epigenetics,



  • Minimum 3-5 years of research experience.
  • SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITY (authority to hire, promote, or terminate):



Massachusetts General Hospital, Center for Genomic Medicine is located in Boston, Massachusetts, a major US city and academic hub, and are a teaching hospital of Harvard University. Abundant opportunities for networking and learning are available.

The information contained in this document is intended to describe the general contents and requirements of work being performed by people assigned to this classification.  It is not intended to be construed as an exhaustive statement of all duties, responsibilities, or skills of individuals so classified.

 EEO Statement Massachusetts General Hospital is an Affirmative Action Employer.   By embracing diverse skills, perspectives and ideas, we choose to lead. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, age, gender identity, disability, sexual orientation, military service, genetic information, and/or other status protected under law. We will ensure that all individuals with a disability are provided a reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment.


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