Cryo-Electron Microscopy Technician

The Imaging Section as part of Research Support Division of OIST is a world class imaging centre with cutting-edge cryo-TEMs, analytical TEMs, serial block face SEM, focussed ion beam SEM, X-ray CT microscope, confocal (two photon) microscopes, super-resolution microscopes (SIM, STED, STORM), light-sheet microscope and the accompanying sample preparation instruments. The Imaging Section is supported by a high-quality Scientific Computing and Data Analysis Section.

The Scientific Imaging Section has been adopted as a member of the project “Basis for Supporting Innovative Drug Discovery and Life Science Research (BINDS, FY2022-FY2026)” funded by Japan Agency for Medical Research (AMED). We provide technical support and collaborations on molecular structural analysis using cryo-electron microscopy to external researchers through AMED. To spread this Nobel Prize winning technology, we set up an on-site training program for young scientists and hold an annual CryoEM Workshop with well-reputed Japanese scientists as instructors and international high-ranking scientists as keynote speakers (See program details).

The Electron Microscopy Specialist will be employed on the AMED grant for BINDS, and takes responsibilities described below, while reporting the Imaging Section Leader. The position is a grant position and is available until 31st March 2027. When qualified a prolongation on an OIST position can be considered.


1919‐1 Tancha, Onna‐son, Okinawa, Japan 904-0495


  1. Contribute to the development of electron microscopy at OIST in the cell biology.
  2. Maintain electron microscopes and relevant equipment including sample preparation devices at the best condition and manage reagents and consumables for electron microscopy.
  3. Support the cryo-electron microscopy specialist in the BINDS project: cryo-sample preparation, imaging and assist in the 4 week’s training programme.
  4. Provide users with appropriate trainings and fair access to the equipment, and monitor the usage of the Facility.
  5. Provide consultations about imaging, measurement, and analysis, and/or support services on cryo-sample preparation, machine operation for data acquisition
  6. In addition to the daily communication with the users, encourage communication among the users for sharing understandings and solving problems.
  7. Expand the coverage of support by introducing the latest technologies to the users and by getting professional technical trainings.
  8. Contribute to collaborative relationships with other domestic and international institutes.
  9. Support purchase and procurement by requesting necessary equipment based on the need from the users, by documentation of the specifications of the equipment, and by communicating with the makers and vendors, etc.
  10. Other duties as required in the Section.


  1. At least 1 - 3 years experience in biological electron microscopy (for technician level). More than 5 years experience would be preferred for the Specialist level.
  2. Experienced in conventional sample preparation for TEM and SEM
  3. Experience in single particle analysis is an advantage
  4. Good understanding in cryo-electron microscopy, with the ability to prepare samples based on cryo-fixation (cryoEM, freeze-substitution, freeze-fracturing) as well as Tokuyasu cryo-sectioning is an advantage.
  5. Interest in light microscopy to support correlative microscopy
  6. Knowledge of image processing software: e.g., IMOD, ImageJ, Amira, Imaris, Chimera, Relion
  7. Knowledge of volume microscopy: focussed ion beam the canning electron microscopy, serial block-face SEM and/or array tomography are an additional advantage.

Report to 

Scientific Imaging Section, Research Support Leader

Starting Date 

As early as possible

Term & Working Hours 

Term: Full-time, fixed term appointment until March 31, 2023.  Contract initially with 3 month probationary period (inclusive). This contract may be renewed until 31st March 2027.
The total term of fixed-term employment with OIST will not exceed 10 years.

Working hours: 9:00-17:30

Compensation & Benefits 

In accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulations


  • Relocation, housing and commuting allowances
  • Annual paid leave and summer holidays
  • Health insurance (Private School Mutual Aid )
  • Welfare pension insurance (kousei-nenkin)
  • Worker's accident compensation insurance (roudousha-saigai-hoshou-hoken)
  • Access to Child Development Center
  • Access to Schooling Options
  • Language Education
  • Recource Center (Daily Life Support in Okinawa)

How To Apply 

Apply by uploading your submission documents HERE*.
*This is a secure file uploading system for handling confidential materials.

If you have any questions, please contact us at recruiting[at]
(replace [at] with @ before using this email address)

Submission Documents 

  • Cover letter in English (and Japanese if possible)
  • Curriculum vitae in English (and Japanese if possible)

*Applicants whose native language is Japanese are required to submit both documents in English and Japanese.
* Please be sure to indicate where you first saw the job advertisement.
* Up to 3 references may be requested during the final interview stage.
* Prior to the start of employment all new hires are required to successfully complete a background check. Personal information including employment history and academic background should be submitted to third-party administrators after a conditional offer of employment.

Application Due Date 

2022/10/28 *Application will be screened upon arrival, and the selection will end once the position is filled.


  • OIST Graduate University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educator and employer and is committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty, students and staff. The University strongly encourages applications from underrepresented groups.
  • Information provided by applicants or references will be kept confidential, documents will not be returned. All applicants will be notified regarding the status of their applications.
  • Please view OIST policy for rules on external professional activities
  • Further details about the University can be viewed on the OIST website