Principal Research Associate, Bacterial Immunology, Infectious Disease Research

Cambridge, MA
Jun 07, 2022
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type
Full time

The Role:

This role is an exciting opportunity to be a critical part of Moderna’s Infectious Diseases research team. Reporting to the Sr. Scientist, Bacterial Immunology, the PRA will contribute to the advancement of Moderna’s mRNA vaccine and antibody programs.  The PRA will be accountable for the design and execution of cellular assays in support of immunotherapy programs.  The PRA will participate in preclinical advancement of immunotherapies across multiple programs.  Located in Cambridge, MA, the individual will be an expert in cellular immunology with deep experience in flow cytometric analysis of T cells.  The individual will possess an interest in working in a highly collaborative and dynamic environment.

Here’s What You’ll Do:

  • Characterize T cell responses to pathogenic bacteria and vaccines via:
    • Flow cytometric immunophenotyping and intracellular cytokine staining
    • T cell elispot
    • Whole blood stimulation assays
  • Investigate mucosal immunology with an emphasis on respiratory mucosal tissues.
  • Evaluate bacterial vaccine induced T cell responses in animal models of bacterial infection.
  • Apply expertise in bacterial immuno-assays to perform binding studies in both flow-cytometry and ELISA formats.
  • Apply knowledge of bacterial immunology to the establishment of appropriate in vitro assays for each target/organism.
  • Work closely with cross-functional teams across the Moderna ecosystem, collaborators and CROs to progress candidates from Discovery through IND-enabling studies.
  • Maintain expertise in the field of microbiology and immunotherapies, through keeping abreast of literature, attending relevant meetings, and liaison with external experts in the field.
  • Manage multiple experiments/projects and interaction with supporting functions.
  • Provide scientific and technical support for multidisciplinary project teams.
  • Prepare documents and present strategy, results, project updates, and summaries.

Here’s What You’ll Bring to the Table:

  • BS degree with at least 5 years or MS with at least 2 years of experience in a lab setting, preferably industry experience with a strong background in immunology.
  • Experience in immunology or a related discipline is required along with expertise in flow cytometry is required.
  • Expertise in flow cytometric antibody panel development and flow data analysis in FlowJo software is required.
  • Expertise in execution of assays and clear communication of data is required.
  • A strong interest in developing reproducible cellular assays to enable immunotherapy development.
  • Expertise in cellular and molecular biology (e.g. cell culture, transfections, transductions, western blotting, immunoprecipitation, and ELISA is preferred. 
  • The ability to work in a cross-functional work environment is critical; independence skills are expected.
  • Excellent written, presentation and interpersonal communication skills; ability to influence and collaborate in a team environment.
  • Candidate will be curious in exploring new paths for drug discovery, bold in proposing creative experimental designs and ideas. Will work collaboratively with multifunctional teams and will be relentless in pursuing successful outcomes.

Moderna is pleased to provide you and your family with a comprehensive and innovative suite of benefits, including:

  • Highly competitive and inclusive medical, dental and vision coverage options
  • Flexible Spending Accounts for medical expenses and dependent care expenses
  • Lifestyle Spending Account funds to help you engage in personal enrichment and self-care activities
  • Family care benefits, including subsidized back-up care options and on-demand tutoring
  • Free premium access to fitness, nutrition, and mindfulness classes 
  • Exclusive preferred pricing on Peloton fitness equipment
  • Adoption and family-planning benefits
  • Dedicated care coordination support for our LGBTQ+ community
  • Generous paid time off, including:
    •    Vacation, sick time and holidays
    •    Volunteer time to participate within your community
    •    Discretionary winter shut down 
    •    Paid sabbatical after 5 years; every 3 years thereafter
  • Generous Paid Leave offerings, including 18 weeks of 100% paid parental leave for all new parents
  • 401k match and Financial Planning tools
  • Moderna-paid Life, LTD and STD insurance coverages, as well as voluntary benefit options
  • Complimentary concierge service including home services research, travel booking, and entertainment requests
  • Free parking or subsidized commuter passes
  • Location-specific perks and extras!

Candidates should be aware that Moderna currently maintains a policy requiring all US-based employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and receive a booster shot once eligible. Newly hired employees must be vaccinated and boosted prior to their employment start date. Moderna is an equal opportunity employer and will provide a reasonable accommodation to those unable to be vaccinated or receive a booster where it is not an undue hardship to the company to do so as provided under federal, state, and local law.

About Moderna

In over 10 years since its inception, Moderna has transformed from a research-stage company advancing programs in the field of messenger RNA (mRNA), to an enterprise with a diverse clinical portfolio of vaccines and therapeutics across seven modalities, a broad intellectual property portfolio in areas including mRNA and lipid nanoparticle formulation, and an integrated manufacturing plant that allows for rapid clinical and commercial production at scale. Moderna maintains alliances with a broad range of domestic and overseas government and commercial collaborators, which has allowed for the pursuit of both groundbreaking science and rapid scaling of manufacturing. Most recently, Moderna's capabilities have come together to allow the authorized use and approval of one of the earliest and most effective vaccines against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Moderna's mRNA platform builds on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery technology and manufacturing, and has allowed the development of therapeutics and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases and autoimmune diseases. Moderna has been named a top biopharmaceutical employer by Science for the past seven years. To learn more, visit

Moderna is a smoke-free, alcohol-free and drug-free work environment.

Moderna is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person’s race, color, gender, age, religion, national origin, ancestry, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation or any characteristic protected under applicable law. Moderna will make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with known disabilities, in accordance with applicable law.