Postdoctoral Fellowship in Retinal Cell Therapy Development

The School of Biomedical Engineering (SBME) at the University of British Columbia (UBC) invites applications for a Postdoctoral Fellow (PDF) position co-supervised by Dr. Christopher Laver (Maxwell Therapeutics Inc. & UBC SBME) and Professor Stephanie Willerth (PI, Willerth Lab at UVic & cross-appointed at UBC SBME).

This PDF position will be located at UBC’s Vancouver Point Grey Campus, primarily within the Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) & ICICS buildings. Secondary Vancouver sites include the Eye Care Centre and Jack Bell Research Centre (at Vancouver General Hospital).

We are seeking a PDF to lead the “Retinal Organoid & Graft Development” sub-team of our Retinal Cell-therapy Research program – a joint R&D initiative between: UBC, UVic, Maxwell Inc., SBME Innovation Hub, e@UBC, and CCRM-West, over the next 4 years.

Qualifications of applicant:


  • Have completed a relevant PhD (e.g., in CNS tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, or stem cell biology) within the last 5 years.
  • Be highly motivated, organized, a good communicator (written and verbal), and passionate about tissue engineering.
  • Thrive in a team environment and mentoring/team-building role.
  • Have a strong desire to conduct translational research in close collaboration with industry (i.e., this project’s UBC-startup, Maxwell Therapeutics Inc. incubated at SBME Innovation Hub & e@UBC).

Ideally, expertise in:

  • Stem cells & regenerative medicine, and neural directed-differentiation of PSCs.
  • Advanced cell-culture and tissue engineering techniques (e.g., organoids, bioprinting, etc.).
  • Immuno-histo/-cyto chemistry, confocal microscopy, flow cytometry/FACS, and RNAseq, single-cell sequencing (e.g., 10X).

Responsibilities & training:

  • Lead retinal organoid & graft development and publication, with guidance and oversight from Dr. Laver & the rest of the Vancouver/UBC team, and in close collaboration with the Willerth Lab (UVic).
  • Mentor MSc, Co-op, and Honours students.
  • Work closely with Maxwell Inc. to advance this R&D initiative and assist in developing joint academia-industry funding opportunities.
  • Your training will also incorporate technology-transfer and university-startup mechanics; including, the option to join e@UBC and CDL-West incubator sessions.
  • The candidate will be directly supervised by Dr. Laver (daily/weekly) and co-supervised virtually (bi-weekly) by Professor Willerth (UVic).

Duration & Salary:

This full-time PDF position has an initial 1-year appointment (as per UBC policy for PDFs), with the potential for annual renewal/promotion (a key objective of this position) over the 4-year project. This is intended to be a growth position.

This position is geared towards PDFs interested in an industry path & University spin-off company building. A potential path example over the next 4 years: first 1-2 years as a PDF, years 3-4 as a Research Associate/Scientist, followed by full-time Senior Scientist/Division Head/or C-level within Maxwell Therapeutics Inc.

Salary will be commensurate with qualifications.

Candidate-held Fellowships/Awards covering full-salary would be additive to a full base-salary (e.g., typically resulting a 40-60% top-up; this is negotiable).

The anticipated start date is Winter/Spring 2021 (this is negotiable). Review of applications will start immediately and will continue until the position is filled.


Please send your CV, cover letter, and contact information of 3 references, addressed to Dr. Christopher Laver at, who is leading this R&D initiative and recruiting. Please make sure to Cc Prof. Stephanie Willerth at

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

Reference Number

Please mention reference number GPS-54825 in all your correspondence about this Postdoctoral Fellow position.

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