Featured Exosome Job – Research Scientist – Extracellular Vesicle and Cancer Nanotechnology

As a (Senior) Scientist in the Molecular Research team focused on extracellular vesicles (EVs), you will lead the research efforts on utilizing EVs as a source of biomarkers for early detection of cancer. You will be responsible for establishing the prototype of scalable plasma EV extraction methods and integrating them into preanalytical workflows to enhance our end-to-end diagnostic test performance. You will serve as a subject matter expert in EV biology and collaborate with the genomics and proteomics teams to deeply understand how each of Freenome’s analytes can be stably preserved and consistently measured in extracellular vesicles across a wide range of preanalytical conditions.  In this role, you will contribute to the optimization and validation of the plasma EV extraction method and bring it to a high-throughput reproducible workflow to enable large-scale biomarker discovery studies. Finally, you will also leverage expertise in nanotechnology to work with CROs and/or develop in-house capabilities to incorporate novel biophysical signals of plasma EVs and other nano-sized entities into Freenome’s discovery platform for cancer diagnosis.

How you’ll contribute:

  • Establish and employ novel analytical methods to characterize naturally occurring nanoparticles in blood, e.g., extracellular vesicles, lipoproteins, nucleosomes in bulk and at the single-particle level
  • Determine and leverage unique physicochemical properties of EVs to establish the prototype of plasma EV extraction method
  • Lead cell culture development activities to generate research-grade reference material and establish quality control metrics for method validation and proof-of-concept studies
  • Design and execute studies to evaluate the impact of preanalytical variables (including sample collection, shipping, and storage conditions) on analyte stability in EVs and other blood fractions.
  • Collaborate with Genomics and Proteomics teams to rapidly iterate and improve on plasma EV extraction method and analyze EV nucleic acid and protein cargo for biomarker discovery studies
  • Evaluate emerging technologies for measuring biophysical properties (e.g., acoustic, electrical, mechanical, optical)of plasma EVs and other fractions to identify clinically relevant signals

What you’ll bring:

  • Ph.D. (or equivalent industry experience) in chemical engineering,  nanotechnology, biophysics, analytical chemistry, cell biology, or a related field
  • Deep understanding of physical and chemical principles governing nanoparticle or protein purification method development is a must. Candidates with experience in any of the following research areas are encouraged to apply: surface chemistry, zeta-potential, size exclusion, ion exchange, colloid science, nanoparticle synthesis, magnetic bead separation or microfluidics
  • Extensive hands-on experience with size- or charge-based methods for the  nanoparticle isolation or protein purification preferably in biotech/biopharma industry or research institute core facility
  • Strong analytical background including prior experience with dynamic light scattering, Zeta potential, nanoparticle tracking analysis and electron microscopy
  • Baseline knowledge of blood composition including both cellular (e.g., neutrophils, PBMCs) and cell-free fractions (e.g., EVs, lipoproteins)
  • Excellent creative thinking, scientific problem-solving, and communication skills and ability to work with team members in the same and adjacent disciplines
  • Valuable supplementary experiences include:
    • Familiarity with analytical methods used to extract, quantify, and characterize nucleic acids (e.g., qPCR and next-generation sequencing)
    • Broad knowledge of protein quantitation assays, including BCA, immunoblotting, ELISA, flow cytometry, MSD, or Luminex
    • Ability to design assays for automated platforms and experience working with liquid handlers
    • Hands on experience with cell culture and aseptic technique
    • Experience mentoring and training research associates and junior scientists

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