Research Associate III

Meso Scale Discovery Gaithersburg, MD
POSITION SUMMARY:

A Research Associate III (RA III) is responsible for independently designing and executing experiments and analyzing the resulting data in support of reagent and assay development projects. The RA III may also be responsible utilizing various techniques for biomarker assay and/or reagent development or target validation using cell lysates, CSF, serum or plasma. This is a laboratory position performing protein-based immunoassays on a routine basis with relatively high throughput (3-10 plates per day).

The RA III is expected to be able to lead and/or direct the work of others, to include establishing the scope of work assignments, experiments and work schedules/deadlines. The RA III is expected to be able to independently manage multiple projects. The incumbent is expected to display a wide-degree of latitude, creativity and self-management in addition to providing oversight and guidance to other team members as needed.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

* Plan experiments, analyze data and present that data clearly

o Complete appropriate documentation to support testing procedures including data capture, forms, logbooks, and inventory batch records

o Analyze and prepare reagent and/or assay product documentation, organize and procure needed reagents, perform experiments, analyzing data and documenting results

o Regular presentation of results and contribution to scientific efforts of the group.

* Participation in general lab maintenance including maintaining laboratory supplies and equipment

o Maintain and update electronic inventory list database (using SharePoint), physical inventory and processing/aliquotting/vialing/labeling materials

o Prepare, maintain and report reagent inventories for assigned methods

* Utilize self-reliance in understanding and adhering to laboratory safety precautions and proper use of personal protective equipment

o Some projects require running assays with Biosafety Level 2 (BSL-2) samples such as human serum and plasma

o RA III should feel comfortable handling or being trained to handle BSL-2 samples and work in a Biological Safety Cabinet

* Incumbents may be required to develop and implement SOPs as well as participate as a time member in developing new documentation for the department

* This role may supervise the work of others in all aforementioned areas of productivity and effectiveness

o Responsible for supporting, mentoring and documenting performance evaluation for those they supervise

o May be responsible for training and development of laboratory personnel

* Specific duties may vary depending upon departmental requirements

RequirementsEXPERIENCE AND QUALIFICATIONS:

* Bachelor's degree in life sciences, protein sciences, cellular/molecular biology, chemistry, biochemistry, biotechnology, or other related area is required

o Master's degree is preferred

o Additional experience may be substituted for Master's degree

* Minimum 5 years of experience in reagent or assay development in an industrial setting is preferred

* Desirable skills/tools may include but are not limited to:

o Protein expression and protein purification through column chromatography on a routine basis

o Chromatography, gel electrophoresis and protein expression techniques

o Experience with protein based immunoassays, running antibody-based assays, developing reagents and product development

o Working knowledge of protein chemistry, protein and/or peptide isolation and purification methods

o Experience with Western Blot, immunoblot or microarray techniques

o Experience with production of cell-based products

o Understanding of basic molecular biology techniques

o Processing and/or characterizing reagents, proteins and antibodies

* Training and experience with Biosafety Level 2 (BSL-2) techniques is highly preferred

* Management experience is a plus

* A demonstrated level of consistency in performance and aptitude for managing additional responsibility and accountability are required for next level consideration

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES:

* Strong scientific fundamentals and analytical background

o Logical problem solving and demonstrated ability to organize and move project tasks forward in an orderly and structured fashion

* Demonstrate ability to process and characterize incoming proteins and antibodies according to company procedures

* Independently execute assay and reagent troubleshooting, optimization and validation experiments

* Excellent oral, written communication and interpersonal skills

o Effectively communicate issues/problems and results that impact timelines, accuracy and reliability of laboratory data

o Effectively communicate performance goals and expectations

* Proficiency in MS Office suite

o Experience with standard data analysis tools (Excel, GraphPad Prism) and the quantitative background to advance this knowledge on the job is expected

* Familiarity with SharePoint (end user minimum is a plus) and electronic file management is necessary

* A wide degree of creativity and latitude is expected including the ability to multi-task and work productively in a demanding research environment with changing priorities

PHYSICAL DEMANDS:

* Up to 60 % of the day may be spent at a lab bench

* There are aspects of the positions duties that require a person in this role to work at heights above four (4) feet on occasion

* Ability to lift up to 25 lbs

WORK ENVIRONMENT:

* Laboratory environment working with chemical reagents and performing some Biosafety Level 2 work

o May involve handling of BSL-2 materials and organisms including human blood and/or blood products

* Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities.

* Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here.

* The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)

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