Job Description

Payroll Title:
CANCER CENTER/Solid Tumor Therapeutics
Salary Range
Commensurate with Experience
Moores Cancer Center
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
RX Contract
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hrs/day, Monday - Friday

As a federally-funded institution, UC San Diego Health maintains a marijuana and drug free campus. New employees are subject to drug screening.

#112104 Tumor Biology Lab Research Associate

Extended Review Date: Mon 12/6/2021

For the safety and well-being of the entire university community, the University of California requires, with few exceptions, that all students, faculty and staff be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus and influenza before they will be allowed on campus or in a facility or office. For more information visit: Flu Vaccine Mandate / COVID Vaccine Policy

This position will remain open until a successful candidate has been identified.

UCSD Layoff from Career Appointment: Apply by 10/07/21 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 10/18/21. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.

This position will be hired at the Staff Research Associate 2 or Staff Research Associate 3 level depending on the experience of the selected candidate.


Under supervision, perform cell culture and propagation of tumor cell lines as well as transfection and cellular fractionation experiments. Independently maintain tumor cell and organoid cultures for use in transfection and infection experiments. Responsible for maintaining and inventory of frozen cell stocks and routine testing for mycoplasma contamination. Process tumor specimens by extracting DNA and RNA, as well as perform cloning and subcloning of DNA fragments. Perform molecular biology/cell biologic assays, to study mouse models of cancer. Works with animal models of cancer. Perform animal crosses and genotyping, and tumor formation assays by transplantation of cancer cells into mice. Perform computational analysis and data management.

Perform ordering, inventory, and basic laboratory supply management. Act as the Area Safety Coordinator for assigned laboratory space. Responsible for EH&S compliance of the laboratory and the required training of lab personnel. Prepare chemical, biological, and radiation protocols for submission to EH&S committees for review. Assist Principal Investigator with departmental budgetary and personnel matters. Integrate information obtained from scientific journals for use in the laboratory and disseminate this information to other lab members. Other duties assigned as needed.


  • Theoretical knowledge of cell biology and molecular biology as typically attained by a Bachelor's degree in Biology, Chemistry, or other related areas, and/or equivalent education and experience.

  • Experience performing routine cell culture techniques, such as pipetting culture media onto growing human cells in culture plates and pipetting trypsin solution onto cell layers. Experience following basic research protocols and instructions closely.

  • Experience working with mice for surgical procedures, including anesthesia administration. Experience preparing reagents and cells for animal studies, performing in vivo luciferase assays, and measurement of tumor size.

  • Experience with extracting DNA and RNA from tumor specimens, and cloning and subcloning of pertinent DNA fragments. Experience performing PCR and qPCR reactions.

  • Experience with preparing chemical solutions, including performing gel electrophoresis by mixing gel solutions and pouring into gel molds. Ability to perform standard mathematic computations (calculate molarity) accurately.

  • Basic knowledge of Computational Biology and Bioinformatics. Knowledge of computational biology including specifically the use of cancer genomics tools and applications is preferred.

  • Experience and skill in using computers for basic word processing and data entry as well as PubMed and database searching and basic database analysis (e.g. BLAST).

  • Knowledge of laboratory procedures and equipment, such as sterile techniques, preparation of buffers, centrifuges, balance pH meters and electrophoresis equipment.

  • Strong communication skills (both verbally and written) needed to interact professionally and effectively with a diverse population at all levels of organization in person, over the phone or in writing. Ability to use diplomacy, tact, and discretion in all interactions.

  • Experience in performing experimental protocols and in recommending modifications to procedures and protocols.

  • Experience with transfection of plasmids, siRNA, or other genetic material into tumor cell lines.

  • Experience with Florescent Activated Cell Sorting (FACS) experiments and performing luciferase, clonogenic, anchorage independent growth, and other bio-assays.

  • Experience working with animal care protocols and laboratory safety coordination and compliance training.

  • Experience working with animal crosses and/or genotyping, and ability to conduct tumor formation assays by transplantation of cancer cells into mice.

  • Ability to integrate information obtained from scientific journals for use in the laboratory and disseminate to other lab members.


  • Employment is subject to a criminal background check.

Job offer is contingent on successful engagement in the UC COVID-19 Vaccination program (fully vaccinated with documented proof or approved exception/deferral).

UC San Diego Health is the only academic health system in the San Diego region, providing leading-edge care in patient care, biomedical research, education, and community service. Our facilities include two university hospitals, a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, Shiley Eye Institute, Sulpizio Cardiovascular Center, and several outpatient clinics. UC San Diego Medical Center in Hillcrest is a designated Level I Trauma Center and has the only Burn Center in the county. We invite you to join our dynamic team!

Applications/Resumes are accepted for current job openings only. For full consideration on any job, applications must be received prior to the initial closing date. If a job has an extended deadline, applications/resumes will be considered during the extension period; however, a job may be filled before the extended date is reached.

UC San Diego Health is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, gender identity or sexual orientation. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

UC San Diego is a smoke and tobacco free environment. Please visit for more information.

Application Instructions

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