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Scientist/Senior Scientist - Process Development

Company: Nkarta, Inc.
Location: South San Francisco
Posted on: June 7, 2021

Job Description:

Scientist / Senior Scientist - Process Development

Nkarta is a publicly traded (Nasdaq symbol NKTX), South San Francisco headquartered, early-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of allogeneic, off-the-shelf engineered natural killer, or NK, cell therapies to treat cancer.

Founded in 2015 at the birthplace of biotechnology, our development pipeline of engineered NK cell therapy candidates includes two co-lead clinical programs, NKX101 and NKX019. Clinical trials for 101 are in process; 019 will begin in H2 2021. Nkarta recently announced a collaboration with CRISPR Therapeutics, a world leader in gene-based medicines, for the development and commercialization of up to three new cell therapy candidates and access to clinically validated CRISPR/Cas9 genome engineering.

Complementing our broad research and development capabilities, Nkarta has also built an extensive cell therapy manufacturing operation. We have a 2,700-square foot clinical good manufacturing practice, or cGMP, facility on-site at our primary corporate location in South San Francisco, California. We plan to start in-house manufacturing of NKX019 in 2021 and NKX101 in 2022. We are also currently designing a separate, larger cGMP facility, to supply our anticipated pivotal clinical trial and commercial needs.

Position Title Scientist/Senior Scientist

Location South San Francisco, CA

Reports to Dir/Associate Dir, Process Development

Position Summary

This position plays a critical role in advancing process development of Nkarta's NK cell therapy program as we build out our PD capabilities.

Key Responsibilities

  • Supports process development of phase appropriate cell therapy production processes.
  • Evaluates raw materials and culture systems for use in cell therapy manufacturing processes.
  • Supports process optimization efforts to increase process robustness, reduce costs and improve yield.
  • Designs and executes experiments independently; accurately records, analyzes and communicates data to senior staff and team members.
  • Presents results in team meetings and deliver presentations to both small and large groups.
  • Maintains lymphocyte expansion using a variety of formats (384 well plates, 96-well plates, large-scale culture vessels).
  • Develops cell-based screening assays using automated liquid handler.
  • Utilizes High Content Screening (HCS) technology for high throughput analysis of cell population [i.e. CX5/CX7 or In Cell Analyzer].

Position Requirements

Ability to work on complex problems where analysis requires an evaluation of multiple factors.

  • Strong verbal and writing skills for documentation of data, drafting of technical reports, and communication of progress to supervisor and project teams
  • Basic Understanding of Design of Experiment (DOE) and Quality by Design (QBD)
  • Basic knowledge in programming language such as Python, R orJ MP.
  • Must be able to communicate and multi-task within a fast-paced, highly collaborative team environment with a high degree of self-motivation and organization.
  • Ability to work on complex problems where analysis requires an evaluation of multiple factors.
  • Strong verbal and writing skills for documentation of data, drafting of technical reports, and communication of progress to supervisor and project teams
  • Must be able to communicate and multi-task within a fast-paced, highly collaborative team environment with a high degree of self-motivation and organization
  • Embodies the company culture of empowerment, diversity, and inclusion

Education / Background

  • PhD in immunology/bioengineering/chemical engineering or related discipline and 2 or more years of relevant industry experience; MS with 5+ years relevant industry experience
  • Previous experience in development environment is strongly preferred.
  • Experience in executing cellular characterization instrumentation including ELISA, flow cytometry, lymphocyte activation, and immunohistochemistry

Working Environment

The common requirements of an office environment (computers, computer screens, workstations, etc.) apply when not working in or around the laboratory environment.

About Nkarta

The 100+ team members describe working at Nkarta through some of the following comments. While getting better work-life balance and improving communications between groups in an early stage start up environment are two areas in which we're working, here are real anonymous comments of why people think Nkarta is a great place to work.

People are always open to ideas. This company provides a safe place for its employees (covid testing, etc.)

Exceptionally talented, committed, kind & supportive team

The CEO is transparent and honest with expectations for the whole company. There is genuine care amongst the leadership team for their peers and employees. I believe this is unique.

Not to sound corny, but the emphasis on people as a valuable resource is something I recognize doesn't often exist elsewhere, and it's here in ample supply, which is great.

It's the first place that I've worked where the executive team truly values the employees. It's a pretty amazing thing not to hear that employees can be replaced with someone new. Institutional knowledge is understood.

We have a very diverse team with executives that are friendly and accessible.

Smart and dedicated colleagues. Mission to make a difference in patients lives. Empower us with tools needed to succeed. Open and transparent culture. Transparent leadership. Handling of covid and running the company was done very well.

To learn more about our work at Nkarta and the career opportunities that will drive us forward to serve patients, please visit the company's website at https://www.nkartatx.com

Keywords: Nkarta, Inc., South San Francisco , Scientist/Senior Scientist - Process Development, Other , South San Francisco, California

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