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Research Opportunity Description

Chemical Categories Assessment and Refinement
Research Participation Program
Office of Research and Development
National Center for Computational Toxicology
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Research Triangle Park, NC


Project Description:

A postdoctoral research project training opportunity is currently available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Center for Computational Toxicology (NCCT). This appointment will be served with the new Chemical Safety for Sustainability (CSS) National Research Program in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

CSS research aims to increase the pace and effectiveness at which relevant information can be obtained and used to inform sustainable chemical design, production, and utilization. Toward this goal, NCCT is conducting innovative research using high-throughput screening (HTS) methods to collect data on hundreds of in vitro assays across thousands of chemicals, and is pioneering the development and implementation of novel computational tools and systems modeling approaches to support a variety of chemical toxicity and risk assessment applications of these data (

This project focuses on increasing confidence in the use of chemical categories and read-across for informing decision making. The research participant will be closely involved with scientists in NCCT and EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) to develop methodologies that combine EPA’s in vitro HTS data (ToxCast), predictive signatures of toxicity, and computational models with traditional expert systems and structure-based approaches to enhance both OPPT’s chemical categories for existing chemicals (e.g., HPV and MPV chemicals) as well as new chemicals coming into OPPT through the PMN process.

The participant could be involved in one or more of the following activities:

  • problem formulation (e.g., formulation of overall goals of specific chemical categories assessments and general processes that can be used on target assessment projects);
  • informatics and model development (e.g., software packages/computational methods that integrate current NCCT tools and models, as well as other tools developed or selected by the candidate for program);
  • data mining and analysis;
  • collaboration with a variety of EPA and extramural partners to evaluate the plan and carry out the chemical categories assessments.

Additionally, the intern will receive training in the area of chemical categories assessment and might have the chance to communicate the progress of the research through peer-reviewed publications, national meetings of professional societies, and seminars.


Applicants must have received a doctoral degree in chemistry, with computing experience, or bioinformatics within five years of the desired starting date, or completion of all requirements for the degree should be expected prior to the starting date.

The program is open to all qualified individuals without regard to race, sex, religion, age, physical or mental disability, national origin, or status as a Vietnam era or disabled veteran. U.S. citizenship or lawful permanent resident status is preferred (but can also hold an appropriate visa status, however, an H1B visa is not appropriate).

The appointment is full-time for one year and may be renewed for up to two additional years upon recommendation of EPA and subject to availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend. The participant must show proof of health and medical insurance. The participant does not become an EPA employee.

Technical Questions:

The contact person for this project is Dr. Matt Martin. He can be contacted at

How to Apply:

An application can be found at Please reference Project # EPA-ORD/NCCT-IO-2014-01 when calling or writing for information.