Job Title: Research Associate, Molecular Screening

Reporting to: Lead, Molecular Screening

Location: Durham, North Carolina, USA


About Pairwise:

Pairwise is a mission-driven food+tech company dedicated to building a healthier world through better fruits and vegetables. Founded in 2017 by eminent scientists in the gene editing and biotechnology fields, Pairwise holds licenses from Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital to base editing and high-fidelity enzymes. We also are tuned in to consumer food trends, and we believe that consumers deserve more variety and innovation in their fresh food choices. Our team is primed to deliver that innovation through one of the best gene-editing platforms in food and agriculture. Pairwise has an exclusive 5-year research collaboration with Bayer to develop products in corn, soybean, wheat, canola, and cotton. Plus, Pairwise is developing new types of leafy greens, berries, and stone fruit, with the first product expected in late 2022. Pairwise is based in the start-up friendly Research Triangle Park area of North Carolina.


About This Role:

Pairwise is seeking to hire a motivated candidate into its Trait and Tool Development group to help achieve core aspects of the company’s R&D goals and scientific strategy. We are looking for candidates with at least Bachelor’s degree level training and one-two years of experience working on high-throughput next generation sequencing or qPCR platforms. Successful candidates must show the ability to work independently and as part of a dynamic team. Core responsibilities include applying state-of-the-art molecular biology techniques in support of a quantitative high throughput plant next generation sequencing and qPCR pipeline. In addition, your contributions will be critical to planning weekly pipeline runs and you will play an active role in expanding and improving our molecular screening pipeline. In fulfilling your job responsibilities, you will employ various next generation sequencing workflows from library construction to sequencing for platforms including Illumina Miseq, Oxford Nanopore and PacBio Sequel in order to meet aggressive targets amidst a culture where science is fun.


Essential Functions:

  • Work closely with team members to maintain a reliable molecular screening pipeline that fills critical R&D goals for genome editing technologies and trait production.
  • Apply experience and innovation to drive continuous optimization and improvements in standard processes that support the team’s functions.
  • Assist in coordinating and planning weekly pipeline runs.
  • Bring new techniques and methodologies into the Pairwise research sphere.
  • Collaborate across multifunctional teams to find new insights.
  • Through time management and efficient planning, apply your skills and execute core responsibilities to proactively support multiple functions within R&D.


Required Education & Experience:

  • Bachelor or Master’s degree in a relevant field, such as molecular biology, microbiology, biochemistry, biology or any biological discipline requiring lab work.
  • Previous lab work experience and demonstrated skills.
  • Knowledge and experience keeping accurate scientific records via LIMs and laboratory notebooks.
  • Previous experience operating/programing liquid handlers or automated laboratory equipment for setting up high throughput molecular assays is of high interest.
  • Proven abilities in developing and optimizing assays for reliable routine use within a pipeline.
  • Experience with troubleshooting processes and monitoring/reporting key performance indicators within a workflow.
  • Experience and knowledge in laboratory safe practices, including use of PPE, SDSs and proper handling and disposal of laboratory waste.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a large lab setting.
  • Ability to work and manage time independently.



  • Comprehensive Benefits Plan, including Medical, Dental, Vision, HSA/FSA, 401k, Life Insurance, Short-Term & Long-Term Disability, and more!
  • Flexible PTO (use what you need, when you need it), in addition to company holidays.
  • Casual work environment.
  • Mission-driven organization focused on creating healthier fruits and veggies.
  • A cutting-edge, driven community looking to lead the industry in innovation and nutrition.


EEO Statement:
We're an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status.