Invites visiting students, postdocs at the University of California San Diego

Scholarship: Fully funded
Degree: BS, MS, PhD
Nationality: International Students
Location: USA
Application deadlines Open

Scholarship Description:

The laboratory of Dr. Alejandro (Alex) Chavez at the University of California San Diego, is eager to welcome visiting undergraduate students who have an interest in learning about modern approaches to genetic and drug screening and their application to the areas of neurodegeneration and infectious disease. The laboratory has a broad interest in the development of novel technologies to speed the rate of discovery. Previous students who have spent time in the lab have used the opportunity to gain valuable skills in synthetic biology, genome engineering, and computational biology and have subsequently gained admittance to top PhD and MD/PhD program at UPenn, Harvard, MIT, Columbia, Cambridge, and Duke. Visiting students will be given the opportunity to work on a wealth of projects ranging from the identification of novel viral protease inhibitors to the in vivo interrogation of gene function within animal models of neurodegeneration. All students are empowered to play an active role in their research. Furthermore, to ensure the growth of junior lab members they will be trained in not only the technical aspects of research but also the intellectual aspect of hypothesis generation, data interpretation, and experimental design to help guide their scientific growth. 

 Available Subjects:

  • Synthetic biology, genome engineering, and computational biology

Eligibility criteria:

  • The candidate will help lead two well established projects in the lab. The first project involves the discovery of novel CRISPR transcriptional regulators, like dCas9-VPR and dCas9-KRAB-MeCP2, by using a new high-throughput method of protein engineering that allows thousands of CRISPR variants to be generated and tested in parallel. The second project involves the creation and implementation of a novel method for performing in vivo CRISPR screens, with an overall goal of understanding the genes that regulate neuronal survival within animal models of neurodegeneration. Other than these two projects, we are also looking for postdoc candidates for other projects. For the full list of potential research projects, check for our website ( We place a heavy emphasis on mentoring and ensuring that all members of our lab are achieving their potential. 

Application Procedure:

Any candidates interested in joining our team should reach out to Dr. Chavez at [email protected]. For PIs updated publication record please see: