Research Associate/Sr Research Associate, Pre-Clinical

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Job Description

The Research Associate/Senior Research Associate, CAR-T Development is an integral member of the Preclinical Immunotherapy Research group. The Senior Research Associate, CAR-T Development will serve as a technical expert in the generation and characterization of novel CTL and Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T cell therapies. The successful candidate will perform experiments to support new product development and IND-enabling activities for Atara’s CAR T cell pipeline. The candidate must have extensive laboratory-based expertise with T cell biology, immunology and CAR-T. 

Reports to              Scientist - Preclinical

Location                  Thousand Oaks, CA

Position Responsibilities

  • Performs retroviral (gamma retrovirus and/or lentiviral) transductions of primary T cells and propagation.
  • Evaluates allogeneic CAR T cell activity, efficacy, and alloreactivity.
  • Performs primary immune cell isolation and multi-parameter immunophenotyping by flow cytometry.
  • Designs and executes assays to evaluate target-specific T cell characteristics and function.
  • Performs mammalian cell culture and production of recombinant transient and stable mammalian cell lines.
  • Contributes to experimental design and project direction.
  • Facilitates the establishment of a molecular and cellular lab infrastructure and routine operations.
  • Maintains detailed documentation of laboratory procedures and experiments.
  • Prepares data presentations for internal group meetings.
  • Role model for Atara’s Values of patients first, innovation teamwork, community and mindset.


  • Bachelor’s degree & 1+ years in immune-oncology, cell biology, immunology, molecular biology or related discipline
  • Prefer BS degree with 5+ years’ experience or MS with 3+ years’ experience in immune-oncology, cell biology, immunology, molecular biology or related discipline. At least 2 year of experience in cell therapy, with industry experience preferred.
  • Ability to generate and characterize genetically modified primary T lymphocytes using standard immunological assays including flow cytometry.
  • Expertise with retroviral/lentiviral transduction and primary cell transformation.
  • Experience with manipulation of CAR-T and/or TCR-T cells.
  • Expertise in Immune cell-based assays including proliferation and cytotoxicity.
  • Expertise in culturing PBMCs, human lymphocytes, and mammalian cell lines.
  • Excellent record keeping, communication skills and computer skills including FlowJo, Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, and Graphpad Prism.
  • Excellent organizational skills and an ability to prioritize effectively to deliver results within reasonably established timelines.
  • Strong interpersonal skills including verbal and written communication.
  • Role model for Atara TRAIT values (Transparency, Respect, Accountability, Integrity, Trust)
  • More About Atara Bio

    We launched Atara Biotherapeutics in August 2012 to help patients with serious diseases and few therapeutic options. We are considered a leading off-the-shelf T-cell immunotherapy company (Nasdaq ATRA) developing novel treatments for patients with cancer, autoimmune and viral diseases.

    We’re proud of our team of 550+ Atarians co-located by design in 4 different locations including South San Francisco (corporate headquarters), Thousand Oaks (R&D and manufacturing headquarters), Zug, Switzerland (european headquarters) and a R&D site in the Denver, Colorado area. Our Southern California hub is anchored by a new 90,000 sq. ft., state-of-the-art Atara T-Cell Operations and Manufacturing (ATOM) facility.  

    Our mission – “Transform the lives of patients with serious medical conditions through pioneering science, teamwork, and a commitment to excellence.”

    Our vision - “T-Cell Immunotherapy for every patient, any time.”

    Atara offers a competitive benefits packages that includes medical/dental/vision benefits, life and disability, retirement and stock program, as well as a generous paid time off and wellness plan that supports the well-being of our staff.  Visit www.atarabio.com/careers to learn more.

    Atara Bio is an equal opportunity employer and makes employment decisions on the basis of merit and other lawful factors. In accordance with applicable law, the Company prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, creed, sex, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth or medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth), gender identity, expression or dysphoria, marital status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, veteran status, caregiver status, sexual orientation, transgender status or any other classification protected by federal, state or local laws or because of the individual’s association with a member of a protected group or connection to an organization or group related to a protected group.

    We comply with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act. All applicants must have authorization to work for Atara Bio in the United States.