Job Description

Payroll Title:
CANCER CENTER/Solid Tumor Therapeutics
Hiring Pay Scale
$24.88 - $43.58 / Hour
Moores Cancer Center
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
RX Contract
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hrs/day, Monday-Friday

#119863 Research Assistant

Extended Deadline: Wed 4/5/2023

UC San Diego values equity, diversity, and inclusion. If you are interested in being part of our team, possess the needed licensure and certifications, and feel that you have most of the qualifications and/or transferable skills for a job opening, we strongly encourage you to apply.

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

The job description and qualifications for this position have been updated as of 3/14/23.

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

UCSD Layoff from Career Appointment: Apply by 11/03/2022 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 11/14/2022. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.

This position will be hired at the SRA 1 or SRA 2 level depending on the experience of the selected candidate.


The Moores Cancer Center (MCC) is one of just 53 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States and the only one in San Diego County. As a consortium cancer center, it is a collaborative partnership between the UCSD: encompassing 28 departments, 6 schools (School of Medicine, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Public Health, Jacobs School of Engineering, School of Biological Sciences & the School of Physical Sciences), UCSD Health oncology hospitals and clinics; the basic and public health research and outreach of San Diego State University (SDSU), and the basic and translational research of the La Jolla Institute of Immunology (LJI). These various programs and units are all dedicated to fulfilling the Moores Cancer Center's mission of reducing cancer's burden. As such, it ranks among the top centers in the nation conducting the continuum of cancer research, providing advanced patient care, and serving the community through outreach and education programs. As a top-ranking, future-oriented organization, we offer challenging career opportunities in a fast-paced and innovative environment. Moores Cancer Center follows a progressive philosophy of career-path development for its employees including opportunities for cross-training, professional development, and progressive responsibility.

MCC's mission is to transform cancer care in our catchment area and beyond by driving exceptional scientific discoveries and innovations in prevention, detection, care, and training. MCC will make a global impact on improving health by reducing cancer burden through accelerated discovery and translation, compassionate and interdisciplinary care, education and community engagement, with the foundation of our core values - Excellence, Innovation and Risk-Taking, Collaboration, Diversity and Service.

Under supervision, assist with experiments to study the efficacy of novel macrophage-targeted therapeutics in promoting anti-tumor immunity. Responsibilities include assistance in maintaining the animal colony, handling mice for surgical procedures, tumor harvest. Assist with performing cell culture and in vivo experiments to study the impact of novel therapeutics on the tumor microenvironment of neuroblastoma and pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Perform basic primary cell culture, and isolate DNA and RNA from cell culture and tissues. Record and analyze data accurately, order lab supplies, and perform lab inventory.


  • Theoretical knowledge of molecular biology, immunology, cell biology, and/or biochemistry.

  • Ability and willingness to handle and work with small animals. Ability to assist in performing mouse injections, anesthesia, blood and tissue collection, and euthanizing. Ability to assist with maintaining an animal colony by breeding, genotyping and weaning animals, creating new animal strains and keeping accurate records.

  • Experience with basic bacterial and tissue culture techniques and maintenance of sterility.

  • Ability to perform basic molecular biology techniques including DNA and RNA isolation, PCR, RT-PCR, and plasmid preparation.

  • Familiarity with basic chemistry techniques including calculation of drug concentrations, preparation of buffers.

  • Familiarity with basic laboratory equipment such as centrifuges, spectrophotometers, balances, pH meters, autoclaves and electrophoresis equipment.

  • Good organizational skills and ability to prioritize work, and ability to read, understand and extract information from published medical, chemical and biological literature. Ability to maintain confidentiality.

  • Proficiency in the use of applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint, PRISM, PUBMED and internet search tools. Ability to use Quartzy and Oracle to place and reconcile orders and receipts.

  • Familiarity with proper handling of chemical and biohazardous materials. Ability to follow UCSD Safety and Hazardous Materials guidelines. Ability and willingness to work with hazardous materials. Understanding of safety procedures and guidelines.

  • Excellent communication skills both verbal and written. Ability to work professionally and harmoniously with others in an integrated project. Skill at prioritizing work to meet all deadlines and accurately document research procedures.

  • Ability to follow standard research protocols and to assist with solving research and methodological problems. Willingness and ability to learn new skills, research methods, and scientific principles. Absolute honesty regarding conduct of experiments and data.

  • Ability to read, comprehend and discuss research materials and prepare accurate and complete research reports.

  • Ability to assist with basic molecular biological techniques, including DNA purification and cloning.

  • Ability to assist with protein analysis techniques including protein determination and protein separation techniques.

  • Ability to order/track supplies, and maintain inventory. Ability to manage official travel and entertainment documentation and file reimbursements requests.


  • Experience with the operation of HPLC equipment using reverse-phase and SEC columns and techniques.

  • Experience with DNA cloning techniques and the construction of expression vectors.

  • Experience with the production and purification of recombinant proteins in bacterial and mammalian cells.


  • Employment is subject to a criminal background check.

  • Must be willing and able to work with hazardous materials (biological and chemical).

  • Must be available to work some long days and weekend hours if needed.

  • Must be willing and able to work with small animals.

Pay Transparency Act

Annual Full Pay Range: $51,949 - $61,972 (will be prorated if the appointment percentage is less than 100%)

Hourly Equivalent: $24.88 - $29.68

Factors in determining the appropriate compensation for a role include experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, and other business and organizational needs. The Hiring Pay Scale referenced in the job posting is the budgeted salary or hourly range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position. The Annual Full Pay Range may be broader than what the University anticipates to pay for this position, based on internal equity, budget, and collective bargaining agreements (when applicable).

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

If applicable, life-support certifications (BLS, NRP, ACLS, etc.) must include hands-on practice and in-person skills assessment; online-only certification is not acceptable.

UC San Diego Health Sciences is comprised of our School of Medicine, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, The Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science, and our Student Health and Well-Being Department. We have long been at the forefront of translational - or "bench-to-bedside" - research, transforming patient care through discovery and innovation leading to new drugs and technologies. Translational research is carried out every day in the hundreds of clinical trials of promising new therapies offered through UC San Diego Health, and in the drive of our researchers and clinician-scientists who are committed to having a significant impact on patient care. We invite you to join our 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.

To foster the best possible working and learning environment, UC San Diego strives to cultivate a rich and diverse environment, inclusive and supportive of all students, faculty, staff and visitors. For more information, please visit UC San Diego Principles of Community.

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.

UC San Diego Health maintains a marijuana and drug free environment. Employees may be subject to drug screening.

Application Instructions

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