Research in the Lu lab is highly interdisciplinary, with projects involving molecular, computational, and chemical biology. Postdocs are exposed to research questions and techniques in the forefront of various fields centered around RNA. This training environment is exceptionally valuable for individuals who are interested in pursuing careers in academia or scientific leadership positions in the pharmaceutical industry. The PI is fully committed to empowering trainees with the capabilities to fulfill their ambitions. Each of the projects entail considerable creativity and innovation and applicants with these skills are especially encouraged to apply.

USC School of Pharmacy is located in Health Sciences Campus, immediately adjacent to the USC Keck School of Medicine and Caltech. This rich scientific environment provides unique research training opportunities, such as research seminars given by leaders in science from throughout the U.S. and abroad, opportunities for collaborations, exposure to diverse research programs, and highly sophisticated core facilities.

Questions about the positions described below, and/or applications, comprising a CV, statement of research interests, and contact information for three references, should be e-mailed to Dr. Lu at zhipengluchina at

Postdoctoral fellows

Several postdoctoral positions in the Lu lab are currently available. Current projects in the lab include development of new technologies for the analysis of RNA structures and interactions in living cells and applications to both basic biology and human diseases. Please see the description of current research directions. The Lu lab also welcome novel and unconventional ideas as long as they are related to our current work. Passionate and independent fellows with backgrounds in chemical biology, biochemistry, cell biology, RNA biology, computational biology, mouse genetics, pathology are especially encouraged to apply. Please email a cover letter, CV, and three references directly to Dr. Lu.

Graduate students

USC graduate and MD/PhD students interested in obtaining an interdisciplinary education at the interface of the chemical, computational and biological sciences should should email Dr. Lu directly to inquire about a rotation. Please include a CV and short paragraph about research interests. Prospective graduate students should apply directly to the following programs: School of Pharmacy Pharmaceutical & Translational Sciences (PHTS) PhD and Master’s, Keck School of Medicine PhD Programs in Biomedical and Biological Sciences (PIBBS) and USC-Caltech MD-PhD Program.

Research Associates

We are always looking for individuals who have just received or are about to receive their undergraduate degrees and would like to obtain an intensive two year research experience prior to graduate or medical school. Please email a cover letter, CV, and two references to Dr. Lu directly.


We welcome undergraduates who are interested in testing the water in scientific research. Please email Dr. Lu to inquire about opportunities.