(Senior) Research Associate - Cell Biology and Biochemistry

South San Francisco, CA
Dec 31, 2021
Biotech Bay
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type
Full time

About the Role

At Freenome, our goal is to improve patient outcomes by pioneering the next-generation of blood tests for early and accurate disease detection using our combined multi-omics and machine learning platform. As a (Senior) Research Associate - Cell Biology and Biochemistry, you will participate in the development of an analytical framework for characterizing cell-free and cellular fractions of human blood. In this role, you will contribute to the design and execution of experiments aimed at analyzing the recovery, purity, and stability of clinically relevant blood fractions from a variety of preanalytical workflows to facilitate cancer biomarker discovery and development. You will work closely with other R&D groups to establish appropriate analytical methods and deliver high-quality data and analyses toward the optimization of blood and plasma fractionation methods and the improvement of the preanalytical process.


  • Assist with the isolation of blood components, including plasma, PBMCs, neutrophils, platelets, and extracellular vesicles
  • Assist with development and maintenance of cell culture systems to generate research-grade reference materials for blood fractions
  • Develop and optimize in-house and/or kit-based biochemical assays for assessing analytical performance of blood and plasma fractionation methods, e.g., enrichment, depletion
  • Collaborate with proteomics and genomics teams to run analytical assays for protein, DNA and RNA profiling of various blood fractions
  • Participate in experimental design and troubleshooting efforts, helping develop efficient experimental plans.
  • Take detailed notes, gather high-quality data, and openly communicate on lessons learned while performing experiments.

What We're Looking For:

  • Bachelor’s degree with 2+ years of experience in cell biology, biochemistry, immunology, analytical chemistry, or a related field
  • Experience working with clinical samples including blood, plasma, serum or PBMCs
  • A minimum of one year of experience in mammalian cell culture with demonstrated ability to handle multiple cell lines using good aseptic technique
  • Extensive hands-on experience with protein biochemistry techniques
    • BCA, Bradford or Qubit protein assays
    • SDS-PAGE
    • western blotting
  • Familiar with ELISA, flow cytometry, Luminex, MSD or other immunoassays
  • Highly self-motivated, detail-oriented
  • Proven ability to independently plan and execute, troubleshoot experiments, analyze and interpret data, as well as give effective scientific presentations in team meetings
  • Excellent interpersonal and communications skills, and proven ability to work with team members in the same and adjacent disciplines
  • Valuable supplementary experiences include:
    • Strong analytical chemistry skills
    • Baseline knowledge of blood composition including both cellular (e.g., neutrophils, PBMCs) and cell-free fractions (e.g., extracellular vesicles, lipoproteins)
    • Practical experience with Isoelectric focusing (IEF), two-dimensional (2-D) gel electrophoresis, FPLC, HPLC and mass spectroscopy
    • Prior experience with extracellular vesicle research and familiarity with nanoparticle characterization techniques, e.g, dynamic light scatter (DLS), nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) and electron microscopy
    • Ability to perform basic data analysis in a scientific programming language (e.g., Python or R)
    • Previous industry/start-up experience in the life sciences


Freenome has adopted a COVID-19 vaccination policy to safeguard the health and well-being of our employees. As a condition of employment, our employees working on-site are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, unless a reasonable accommodation is approved or as otherwise required by law.


About Freenome


Freenome is a high growth biotech company on a mission since 2014 to create tools that empower everyone to prevent, detect, and treat their disease.


To achieve this mission, Freenome is developing next-generation blood tests to detect cancer in its earliest, most treatable stages using our multiomics platform and machine learning techniques. Our first blood test will detect early-stage colorectal cancer and advanced adenomas. 


We have raised over $500 million from leading investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital, GV, Roche Venture Fund, Kaiser Permanente Ventures, American Cancer Society’s BrightEdge Ventures, Novartis, Verily, and more. 


A ‘Freenomer’ is a mission-driven employee who is fueled by the opportunity to make a positive impact on patients' lives, who thrives in a culture of respect and cross collaboration, and whose work makes a significant impact on the company and their career. 


Freenome is proud to be an equal opportunity employer and we value diversity. Freenome does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, non-disqualifying physical or mental disability, national origin, veteran status, or any other basis covered by appropriate law.