Oregon Health & Science University

Postdoctoral Researcher (ASXL1/Heme Malignancy)

Job Locations US-OR-Portland
Requisition ID
Position Type
Regular Full-Time
Position Category
Job Type
CEDAR - Knight Cancer Institute
Salary Range
8:30am to 5:00pm
Monday through Friday
HR Mission
School of Medicine
Drug Testable

Department Overview

Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research (CEDAR) center is a collaborative institution within the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute. The Knight Cancer Institute, known as one of the pioneers in personalized cancer medicine, is an international leader in research and cancer treatment. At CEDAR our mission is to detect and stop lethal cancers at the earliest stage because early detection saves lives. This is an ambitious goal, one that requires novelty, creativity, and innovation. We are composed of biologists, chemists, biomedical engineers, computationalists, and clinicians conducting groundbreaking translational cancer research to help people maintain a high quality of life and reduce cancer mortality, to create a global early detection community, and to have a positive impact on the Oregon economy.


CEDAR is committed to increasing the diversity of the campus community. We at CEDAR are dedicated to promoting inclusion and multiculturalism to build a successful organization by having outstanding researchers of diverse backgrounds work together on multiple projects. We encourage high-risk, high-reward research projects because defeating cancer requires unproven, out-of-the-box thinking. Our research is milestone driven to ensure that each project is fulfilling its stated goals.


The OHSU Fellowship for Diversity in Research seeks to address the need for increased representation of minoritized races/ethnicities in STEM at the postdoctoral level. Eligible candidates are encouraged to apply. Visit www.ohsu.edu/ofdir for more information.


CEDAR funds its own research projects, expediting the process of discovery. Our research is milestone-driven to ensure that each project is fulfilling its stated goals. CEDAR offers a unique opportunity for outstanding, driven, and creative postdoctoral fellows to perform cutting edge and high-risk research, ranging from understanding basic cancer biology to developing novel technologies to aid detection. Our focus on early detection requires novel approaches to reliably identify small/rare signals in diverse data types.


Every Knight Cancer employee is expected to embody our guiding principles:

  • We act BOLDLY—Breakthroughs require pushing the boundaries of science, exploring new frontiers, and thinking differently
  • We SUPPORT each other—Respect leads to trust, which leads to excellence
  • We work as a CONNECTED team — We must leverage our collective brain power to conquer cancer because no one individual can do it alone

Function/Duties of Position

We are currently hiring for 1-2 highly motivated fellows with expertise in Cancer Biology to work in the following areas with a particular focus on Leukemia. Individuals with a strong background in Cancer Biology, Leukemia Biology or other related Molecular Biology discipline are encouraged to apply. Candidates would work with a range of CEDAR and OHSU scientists and clinicians conducting leukemia research.

Cancer Epigenetics. Dysregulation or mutation of epigenetic regulators is an early event in leukemia development, yet the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Projects in this area will involve genomic and functional studies characterizing the epigenetic mechanisms of cancer using single cell and low input epigenetic methods in cell lines, genetically engineered mouse models and primary patient samples.

Hematopoietic Stem Cell Biology. The earliest events in leukemia formation occur in the hematopoietic stem cell, leading to clonal expansion and facilitating the acquisition of subsequent transformative mutations. Projects in this area will investigate the impact of early leukemic mutations on stem cell function using both human and murine systems.

Single Cell Multiomics Methodology Development. Early precancerous cells are subclonal populations surrounded by a large number of normal cells. Single cell sequencing methodologies are therefore well poised to interrogate these rare pre-malignant cells. A key component of this process will be linking multiple types of data to the same single cell including genotype, transcriptome, epigenome and proteome. Projects in this space will work to develop methodologies.

Target Identification and Drug Development for Early Stage Blood Cancers. Specific mutations and mutation profiles are associated with an exceedingly high risk of progression from myelodysplastic syndrome and myeloproliferative neoplasms to acute myeloid leukemia. These include key epigenetic regulators and splicing factors. These mutations represent possible targets for early intervention. Projects in this area will identify key pathway dependencies produced by these mutations that are potentially targetable. These studies will use a variety of methodology including genome wide CRISPR screening, protein-protein interaction studies and a variety of molecular and cell biology techniques to validate targets.


Duties Include:

  • Prepare manuscripts, and present research findings as abstracts or oral presentations (travel may be required)
  • Attend weekly group meetings and 1:1 meetings to: 1) present data and interpretation of results; 2) troubleshoot research results and 3) suggest next steps
  • Attend research related meetings including but not limited to Thursday PM SPORE seminars, Cancer Biology meetings, journal clubs
  • Perform experiments utilizing appropriate lab or computational techniques with proficiency, evaluate results, and determine the next steps to complete project and present data.  Think independently and problem solve. Stay on top of the literature and build skills to maximize the projects’ potential.
  • Duties as assigned

Required Qualifications

  • PhD with major coursework in the one of the following areas: cancer biology, molecular biology, hematopoiesis orgenomics
  • Minimum of 3 years as a graduate student
  • Proficient with computers specifically MS Office (which includes, Excel, Access, Word and PowerPoint) and statistical analysis software
  • Strong publication record
  • Experience handling chemical and biologically hazardous materials
  • Knowledge of policy and regulations applicable to the laboratory, including but not limited to safety, animal and radiation
  • Technical proficiency, scientific creativity collaborative ability, and independent thinker
  • Proven ability to work collaboratively with a high performing work group
  • Ability to prioritize multiple tasks at one time
  • Must have excellent communication, analytical and organizational skills:  both written and verbal
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team while being collaborative in resolving problems
  • Demonstrated ability to learn new and innovative processed quickly
  • Must possess energy and drive to coordinate multiple projects simultaneously
  • Ability to use tact and diplomacy to maintain effective working relationships
  • Ability to operate complex scientific equipment and develop and troubleshoot complex experimental protocols
  • Demonstrated ability to build productive cross functional collaborations both internally and externally
  • Ability to analyze short and long term project needs
  • Ability to schedule, manage and coordinate multiple projects and priorities simultaneously

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience epigenetic profiling techniques
  • Experience in hematopoiesis
  • Experience in FACS based methods, biochemistry, and molecular biology
  • Experience in developing computational approaches for modeling genomics data

Additional Details

Apply online. To be considered, please be sure to upload a Cover Letter and Resume/CV.

All are welcome

Oregon Health & Science University values a diverse and culturally competent workforce. We are proud of our commitment to being an equal opportunity, affirmative action organization that does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of any protected class status, including disability status and protected veteran status. Individuals with diverse backgrounds and those who promote diversity and a culture of inclusion are encouraged to apply. To request reasonable accommodation contact the Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Department at 503-494-5148 or aaeo@ohsu.edu.

As an organization devoted to the health and well-being of people in Oregon and beyond, OHSU requires its employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


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