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Scientist, Cancer Vaccines Research

Moderna, Inc.
Cambridge, MA
Start date
Sep 9, 2023

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Science/R&D, Biotechnology, Immunology, Oncology
Required Education
Masters Degree/MBA
Position Type
Full time
Genetown, Best Places to Work

Job Details

The Role:

Moderna is dedicated to maximizing the impact of our cancer vaccine platform on human health. We are seeking a talented and motivated scientists with experience in immuno-oncology research to advance and optimize our Cancer Vaccine Platform, and to support current and new cancer vaccine programs. Research areas of interest include immune-oncology, vaccinology, immunology, cancer biology and dendritic and T cell biology. This role requires scientific rigor, critical thinking, flexibility, multitasking, technical expertise and the ability to bring new impactful techniques and ideas to advance our mission. Applicants should be highly collaborative team players, excellent communicators and have a demonstrable track record of independent research accomplishments, ideally linked to positively impacting human health.

Heres What Youll Do:

  • Help identify, prioritize and realize new concepts to optimize our Cancer Vaccine Platform to advance into next generation programs, including Individual Neoantigen Therapies, cancer vaccines against shared antigens common in broad patient populations and for combinations with cell-based therapies

  • Develop, optimize and validate cell-based assays to evaluate various mRNA vaccines/therapeutics

  • Help provide justification for rational vaccine combinations with mRNA-based approaches as well as with standards of care and other emerging therapies primarily through generation of appropriate pre-clinical data

  • Evaluate potential changes considered for our cancer vaccine platform including advancements in vaccine manufacturing, format and antigen choice

  • Work on new approaches to optimize the generation of our vaccines, from antigen selection and sample collection to profiling of unique muteomes

  • Generate data and provide justification for optimized dose, schedule, and treatment sequencing

  • Analyze human and murine immune cells and responses, including co-culture assays of dendritic and T cells, via high dimensional flow cytometry, ELISpot, and ELISA/MSD; assist new assay development and technological advancements to query vaccine function and effectiveness

  • Collect, archive, organize and analyze samples, including those from in vivo studies

  • Deliver reproducible and impactful results under ambitious timelines

  • Execute and troubleshoot standard protocols, adapt new protocols into practice with little assistance, and query literature to implement new assays as needed

  • Independently plan experiments

  • Analyze, interpret and present data

  • Faithfully document scientific work

  • Contribute to reports, regulatory submissions and presentations

Heres What Youll Bring to the Table:

  • Ph.D. in a biological science or M.S. with extensive relevant experience

  • Solid background in immune-oncology, vaccinology and/or immunology strongly desired

  • Demonstrated ability to design and execute experimental plans

  • Experience/expertise in multiple of the following:

    • multi-parameter flow cytometry

    • cell-based assays (e.g. co-culture functional assays, multi-color flow cytometry, high dimensional flow cytometry (Cytek Aurora/ CyTOF) live cell imaging, ELISA, cell sorting, etc.)

    • phenotyping murine, NHP and human immune cells

    • executing primary immune cell assays and mechanism of action studies

    • biodistribution, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacodynamic analysis using biochemical and flow cytometry assays

    • Nucleic acid quantification:

      • Isolation of nucleic acids from cultured cells and harvested tissue

      • Quantification via qPCR, other formats such as bDNA-based approaches

    • Protein quantification:

      • Isolation of protein lysates from cultured cells and harvested tissue

      • Protein quantification via Western, ELISA, MSD, Luminex-based assays

    • Tissue/cell culture:

      • Cell passaging, archiving, transfection and cell-based functional assays

      • Primary cell isolation and culture, particularly with hematopoietic cells

  • Capability to anticipate and recognize potential issues within experimental designs and effectively communicate alternatives

  • Ability to support multiple projects, prioritize work and meet tight deadlines

  • Candidate will embrace our core values. You 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 that will expand the impact of our cancer vaccines on patients.

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 year-end shutdown
    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!

About Moderna

Since our founding in 2010, we have aspired to build the leading mRNA technology platform, theinfrastructure to reimagine how medicines are created and delivered, and a world-class team. We believe in giving our people a platform to change medicine and an opportunity to change the world.

By living our mission, values, and mindsets every day, our peopleare the driving force behind our scientific progress and our culture.Together, we are creating a culture of belonging and building an organization that cares deeply for our patients, our employees, the environment, and our communities.

We are proud to have been recognized as a Science Magazine Top Biopharma Employer, a Fast Company Best Workplace for Innovators, and a Great Place to Work in the U.S.

If you want to make a difference and join a team that is changing the future of medicine, we invite you to visit to learn more about our current opportunities.

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

Moderna is a place where everyone can grow. If you meet the Basic Qualifications for the role and you would be excited to contribute to our mission every day, please apply!

Moderna is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer.

Moderna is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person's race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, ancestry or citizenship, ethnicity, disability, military or protected veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, marital or familial status, or any other personal characteristic protected under applicable law. Moderna is an E-Verify Employer in the United States. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements.

Belonging, Inclusion, and Diversity are critical to the success of our company and our impact on society. Were focused on attracting, retaining, developing, and advancing our employees and believe that by cultivating diverse experiences, backgrounds, and ideas, we can provide an environment where every employee is able to contribute their best.

Moderna is committed to offering reasonable accommodations to qualified job applicants with disabilities. Any applicant requiring an accommodation in connection with the hiring process and/or to perform the essential functions of the position for which the applicant has applied should make a request to the Talent Acquisition Partner or contact the Accommodations team at (EEO/AAP Employer)




Moderna is advancing messenger RNA (mRNA) science to create a new class of transformative medicines for patients. Moderna’s platform builds on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery technology and manufacturing, providing the Company the capability to pursue in parallel a robust pipeline of new development candidates. Moderna is developing therapeutics and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases and cardiovascular diseases, independently and with strategic collaborators.

mRNA is now a turning point in the history of science, medicine, technology, even humankind itself. With this breakthrough discovery, many of the world’s biggest and most challenging medical problems are no longer a question of “how?” but merely a question of “when?”

Come with us as we pursue the uncharted reaches of possibility and make your mark on the future of medicine.


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Company info
200 Technology Square
Cambridge, MA
United States

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