Career | Scientist, Gene Editing | Umoja Biopharma

Scientist, Gene Editing

Umoja Biopharma

Louisville, CO, US

  • Job Type: Full-Time
  • Function: Life Sciences R&D/Engineering
  • Industry: Therapeutics
  • Post Date: 09/19/2023
  • Website:
  • Company Address: 1920 Terry Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101, US

About Umoja Biopharma

Umoja is developing a new approach to cancer therapy that retools a patient’s immune system in vivo, enhancing the body’s natural capacity to fight cancer. We envision a world where all patients with cancer have access to the most advanced immunotherapies and are free from the burdens of traditional cancer therapies.

Job Description

Umoja Biopharma is a game-changing biotech start-up with locations in Seattle, WA and Louisville, CO, focused on transforming the treatment of cancer with a novel integrated immunotherapy platform. Our vision is to develop off-the-shelf therapies capable of treating any tumor, any time. We are a diverse and growing team working in brand-new facilities in downtown Seattle, Washington, and Louisville, Colorado, and we are looking for innovative thinkers who are excited by groundbreaking science and technology, and passionate about squaring up to the challenges inherent to cutting edge drug development. We are committed to the principles of Diversity Equity and Inclusion and strongly invite applications from enthusiastic individuals who share our commitment and help position Umoja as a leader in this front.


We at Umoja believe in the importance of stories; we are looking for great people to join our team to help us create more stories for ourselves, for you, and most importantly for patients and their families. 


Umoja Biopharma – Your Body. Your Hope. Your Cure. 


Position Summary


We are seeking a highly motivated and creative Scientist with expertise in gene editing and molecular biology to join our growing Engineered Allogeneic Therapies (EAT) team to support our allogeneic cell therapy programs. The candidate will work under the supervision of the Gene Editing Lead and be responsible for genetic engineering and testing in the context of cell and gene therapy with induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived immune cells. This individual will focus on creating and implementing innovative genetic payloads that regulate cell function, enable immunotolerance, and/or promote differentiation. This work will require expertise in molecular biology, cell signaling, developmental biology, and gene editing techniques. The successful candidate will work closely with members of the EAT immunology and iPSC teams to rapidly advance discovery programs within our cell therapy portfolio. The candidate must be comfortable working in and contributing to a very dynamic and cross-functional team environment. The ideal candidate must be independent, detailed, results-oriented, with excellent communication skills and be willing to work in a fast-paced and entrepreneurial environment. This is an opportunity to be part of an excellent team of scientists working in an exciting environment focused on realizing and solving the challenges of targeting solid tumors successfully with novel chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) cell products.


Core Accountabilities


Specific responsibilities include:


  • Collaborate with the EAT immunology and iPSC teams to design novel genetic payloads and strategies for gene editing and coordinate experimental hand-offs with other team members.
  • Perform gene editing for payload delivery and gene knockouts in human iPSCs, including clonal selection and expansion of iPSCs.
  • Conduct molecular analyses to characterize and verify gene edits, including molecular cloning, PCR, qPCR, RT-qPCR, Sanger sequencing, RNA-seq, flow cytometry, and Western blotting.
  • Assist in technology transfer of gene-editing processes, protocols, and analytics to internal/external research and development collaborators and/or cGMP manufacturing facilities.
  • Follow advancements in the field of gene editing and the competitive landscape, including safety and regulations surrounding FDA approval of gene-edited cell therapy products, through published literature and presentations at conferences.


Basic Qualifications


  • PhD, MS, or BS in Cell Biology, Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, or relevant field with 0+/8+/10+ years of experience respectively
  • Knowledge and hands-on experience in gene editing strategies (CRISPR, TALEN, or ZFNs).
  • Knowledge and hands-on experience in molecular biology techniques (including molecular cloning, PCR, qPCR, RT-qPCR, Western blotting, and RNA-seq).
  • Proven expertise in the aseptic culture and manipulation of mammalian cells.


Preferred Qualifications


  • 2+ years of relevant experience in gene editing preferred
  • Expertise in the aseptic culture and manipulation of iPSCs and/or hematopoietic cells.
  • Expertise in cell characterization techniques including flow cytometry, immunocytochemistry, and microscopy.
  • Knowledge in the fields of immunobiology and/or regenerative (stem cell) biology.
  • Experience with technical transfer and/or cGMP manufacture of human cell cultures or gene-edited cell therapy products.
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills, capable of conveying technical information in a clear and thorough manner and coordinating closely with other team members.
  • Ability to work independently in day-to-day laboratory operations.


Physical Requirements


  • 100% compliance with personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements in laboratory environments, including gloves, protective clothing, and eye safety glasses.
  • Perform physical tasks required for the role, including standing, walking, bending, kneeling, sitting, working your hands in a biosafety cabinet, and occasionally moving materials up to 50 pounds.
  • Project-oriented work in this role will require regular on-site presence to complete essential job-related functions


Salary Range: $121,125 - $156,750


Benefits Offerings


Umoja Biopharma offers its employees competitive Medical, Dental, and Vision plans through Premera Blue Cross, Delta Dental, and VSP. Additionally, we offer Umojians access to a 401k plan through Fidelity, with a 100% match up to their first 6% deferral. Umoja also provides a competitive, unlimited Paid Time Off policy, employee commuter benefits, and childcare reimbursement. For a full breakdown of our benefits offerings, please see the Benefits section of our website.

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