Research Associate, Biomarker Discovery - Menlo Park

Orca Biosystems
Menlo Park, California
Nov 06, 2019
Nov 14, 2019
Organization Type
Orca Biosystems

In the US alone, a patient dies every 5 minutes from a disease of hematopoietic (blood and immune cell) origin. In addition to this human cost, over $100B is spent annually on the care of these patients. Orca Biosystems is a clinical-stage cell therapy company dedicated to delivering curative medicine to these patients. Orca Biosystems has developed a pipeline of proprietary technologies that have the potential to impact over a 100 malignant and auto-immune diseases. Orca Biosystems has assembled a team of world-leading experts and technologists to execute this vision.

Roles & Responsibilities

The Research Associate is responsible for conducting laboratory-based activities involving the study of patient blood specimens in support of clinical studies. Some of the responsibilities you'll be accountable for include:
  • Faithfully execute scientific protocols
  • Process blood specimens, including Ficoll separation and use of immunomagnetic beads
  • Optimize cellular and molecular assays
  • Use cell separation technologies
  • PCR and qPCR
  • Perform flow cytometry and analyze data
  • Work with new technology
  • Maintain mammalian cell cultures
  • Create, review and support continuous improvements of records and SOPs
  • Analyze results, maintain detailed records of experiments and outcomes
  • Participate in group research discussions
  • Instrument set-up and preparation, maintenance, troubleshooting, and operation
  • Train new hires

Ideal Educational Requirements and Experience
  • Master's or bachelor's degree in biology or related field
  • +1 year of experience in process sciences, discovery research or manufacturing is ideal
  • Experience with aseptic techniques is required
  • Experience with molecular biology techniques, including nucleic acid isolation, PCR, qPCR, RNAseq, and NGS
  • A background in immunology, oncology or cell therapy is preferred
  • Flow cytometry experience is preferred including sorting and analyzing cells
  • Mammalian cell culture experience, experience working with PBMC's a plus
  • Willingness to work on a flexible schedule, as needed, and to work in a BSL-2 environment
  • Ability and willingness to work occasional graveyard shifts

Personal Qualities
  • Highly detail oriented, ability to pay attention to quality and quality control
  • Strong attention to detail and, at the same time, the ability to multitask and handle multiple responsibilities simultaneously
  • Demonstrated strong work ethic, curiosity to learn and contribute in a fast-paced collaborative environment
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including verbal and written communication, are essential in this collaborative work environment
  • Ability to work in a collegial manner, a team player
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced and informal startup environment
  • Highly tolerant and respectful of all members of a small startup company
  • Strong problem-solving skills


In addition to salary, we offer meaningful stock option allocations and benefits.

Corporate Culture at Orca Biosystems

We are a small venture-backed startup. The company environment is team-oriented, friendly and informal. We strive for excellence in performance and quality of work, and at the same time, we believe in maintaining a healthy work/life balance.

Orca Biosystems is an equal opportunity employer & prohibits unlawful discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, national origin/ancestry, age, disability, marital and veteran status.

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