Oregon Health & Science University

Senior Research Associate

Job Locations US-OR-Portland
Requisition ID
Position Category
Position Type
Regular Full-Time
Job Type
CEDAR - Knight Cancer Institute
Salary Range
$57,969 - $79,600, commensurate with experience, education, and equity. (Starting pay $57,969 - $72,400)
Monday through Friday
8:30am to 5:00pm plus occasional nights and weekends
HR Mission
School of Medicine
Drug Testable

Department Overview

Overview: The Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research (CEDAR) center is a collaborative institution within the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute. The Knight Cancer Institute, known as one of the pioneers in personalized cancer medicine, is an international leader in research and cancer treatment. At CEDAR our mission is to detect and stop lethal cancers at the earliest stage because early detection saves lives. This is an ambitious goal, one that requires novelty, creativity, and innovation. We are comprised of biologists, chemists, biomedical engineers, computationalists, and clinicians conducting groundbreaking translational cancer research to help people maintain a high quality of life and reduce cancer mortality, to create a global early detection community, and to have a positive impact on the Oregon economy.


Our Commitment to Diversity: CEDAR is committed to increasing the diversity of the campus community. We are dedicated to promoting inclusion and multiculturalism by having outstanding researchers of diverse backgrounds work together on multiple projects. We encourage high-risk, high-reward research projects because defeating cancer requires out-of-the-box thinking and new perspectives. Our research is milestone driven to ensure that each project is fulfilling its stated goals.


Every Knight Cancer employee is expected to embody our guiding principles:

  • We act BOLDLY—Breakthroughs require pushing the boundaries of science, exploring new frontiers, and thinking differently
  • We SUPPORT each other—Respect leads to trust, which leads to excellence
  • We work as a CONNECTED team — We must leverage our collective brain power to conquer cancer because no one individual can do it alone

Function/Duties of Position

This is a grant funded position with Dr. Ellen Langer. Our research uses small vertebrate models in addition to cellular and molecular biology techniques to understand the mechanisms underlying the initiation and progression of cancer. We are currently hiring a Senior Research Associate to support studies of tumor-microenvironment interactions in early pancreatic cancer using approaches including cell culture, organoid culture, 3D bioprinting, mouse models of tumor development, flow cytometry, RNA, DNA, and protein analysis, cyclic immunofluorescence. Skills required for this position include experience with experimental design, molecular and cellular biology techniques, attention to detail and organizational skills, as well as a high motivation level.  The position will involve working independently and as part of a team to facilitate on-going research projects.


Duties included but are not limited to:

  • Research: Perform experiments, including animal work (husbandry, conducting surgical procedures, administering treatments, measuring tumor burden, extracting tissues), cell culture (maintaining stocks, performing 2D and 3D experiments, and collecting cells for additional analysis), molecular biology (RNA, DNA, and protein analysis), and tissue staining and imaging. 
  • Data collection, organization, interpretation, and presentation: Includes record keeping, data entry, data organization and data management, as well as communication of results in lab meetings, writing assignments, and poster presentations. 
  • Lab Maintenance: Includes helping to order and maintain laboratory equipment and supplies as well as preparing stock solutions.

Required Qualifications

  • PhD in relevant field AND 1 year of relevant experience OR Master's Degree in relevant field AND 5 years of relevant experience OR Bachelor's Degree in relevant field AND 9 years of relevant experience
  • Major course work in the area of cell, molecular, or cancer biology
  • Prior research experience, especially using cellular and molecular techniques
  • Excellent communication, analytical and organizational skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team while being collaborative in resolving problems
  • Ability to prioritize multiple tasks at one time
  • Must possess energy and drive to coordinate multiple projects simultaneously
  • Ability to use tact and diplomacy to maintain effective working relationships
  • Demonstrated ability to learn new and innovative processes quickly
  • Ability to analyze short and long term project needs
  • Technical proficiency, scientific creativity, and independent thinking
  • Knowledge of policy and regulations applicable to the laboratory, including but not limited to safety, animal use and radiation
  • Ability to operate complex scientific equipment and develop and troubleshoot complex experimental protocols
  • Experience handling chemical and biologically hazardous materials
  • Knowledge of cell biology, molecular biology, and genetics

Preferred Qualifications

  • 2 or more years in a research position, including at least 1 year of supervisory and project management experience
  • Prior experience in cancer biology research, prior experience with small rodents

Additional Details

Apply online. Please be sure to upload a Cover Letter and Resume/CV.

Effective Oct. 18, 2021, all OHSU employees were required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they had an approved medical or religious exception. If you are hired by OHSU, you will need to provide proof of vaccination (or approved exception) within 10 days of starting work.


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All are welcome

Oregon Health & Science University values a diverse and culturally competent workforce. We are proud of our commitment to being an equal opportunity, affirmative action organization that does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of any protected class status, including disability status and protected veteran status. Individuals with diverse backgrounds and those who promote diversity and a culture of inclusion are encouraged to apply. To request reasonable accommodation contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Department at 503-494-5148 or aaeo@ohsu.edu.

As an organization devoted to the health and well-being of people in Oregon and beyond, OHSU requires its employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


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