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Molecular Toxicology Summer 2021 Internships

The Department of Defense (DoD) is offering undergraduate-level internships in the Molecular Toxicology Branch of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command's Chemical Biological Center (DEVCOM-CBC).

As an ORISE participant you, will join a community of scientists and researchers in an effort to develop novel tools to assess mechanism of action, toxicity, and other properties of emerging chemical threat agents. These tools aim to supplement or even replace traditional animal models.

Why should I apply?

Under the guidance of a mentor, you will gain hands-on experience to complement your education and support your academic and professional goals. Along the way, you will engage in activities and research in several areas. During the appointment you will learn and participate in the following: 

  • Gain experience in optimizing in vitro plate-reader based assays against benchmark and control compounds; optimizing for plate configuration (12-well, 96-well, 384-well), transient transfection procedures, cell densities, and reagent concentrations using known agonists/antagonists of the target receptor in question and establishing instrument settings and assay protocols.
  • Engage in optimizing procedures and protocols for second-messenger endpoint and kinetic assays, membrane potential endpoint and kinetic assays, as well as calcium flux assays.
  • Participate on other types of scientific study pertaining to assay development in the electrophysiological assessment of chemicals of interest.
  • Learn and demonstrate lab maintenance protocol.

Where will I be located?

Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland

What is the anticipated start date?

DEVCOM-CBC is ready to make appointments immediately. Exact start dates will be determined at the time of selection and in coordination with the selected candidate. Applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis and internships will be filled as qualified candidates are identified.

Appointment Length

An ORISE appointment period can be a short-term (less than 2 weeks), summer (10-12 weeks), or yearlong appointment. Appointments may be extended depending on funding availability, project assignment, program rules, and availability of the participant. The participation rate may vary from completing 20 hours of training or research per week during the academic year to completing 40 hours of training or research per week during the summer months.

What are the benefits?

You will receive a stipend to be determined by DEVCOM-CBC. Stipends are typically based on a participant’s academic standing, discipline, experience, and research facility location. Other benefits may include the following:

  • Health Insurance Supplement. Participants are eligible to purchase health insurance through ORISE.
  • Relocation Allowance
  • Training and Travel Allowance

Nature of Appointment

You will not enter into an employee/employer relationship with ORISE, ORAU, DoD, or any other office or agency. Instead, you will be affiliated with ORISE for the administration of the appointment through the ORISE appointment letter and Terms of Appointment.


The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command - Chemical Biological Center (DEVCOM-CBC) is the primary Department of Defense technical organization for non-medical chemical and biological defense. DEVCOM-CBC activities at the Edgewood portion of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, provide an extraordinary capability against emerging biological and chemical threats by merging intelligence assessments with its world-renowned chemistry, biology, physiology and engineering expertise at every stage of the acquisition life cycle. We provide a unique blend of distinguished scientists and engineers for the research and development of innovative technological solutions to solve chemical and biological defense threats to our nation—both abroad and within the homeland.


All candidates should be actively pursuing a bachelor's degree within the field of engineering, life health and medical sciences and mathematics.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Citizenship: U.S. Citizen Only
  • Degree: Currently pursuing a Bachelor's Degree