Job Title: Scientist, DNA Repair

Reporting to: Lead, Molecular Biology

Location: Golden Belt Campus, Durham NC

About Pairwise:

Pairwise is a mission-driven, food+tech company dedicated to building a healthier world through better fruits and vegetables. Pairwise was founded in 2017 by scientists at Harvard University, MIT, and Broad Institute who are eminent in the field of gene editing, as well as biotechnology industry pioneers. Our team is tuned in to consumer food trends, and we believe that consumers deserve more variety and innovation in their fresh food choices. We are 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 a highly-dedicated research scientist to join the Trait and Tool Delivery – Molecular Biology team and be part of cutting-edge technology and product development. The DNA repair scientist will join a dynamic team responsible for designing state-of-the-art genome editing tools, optimizing their performance, and applying them to a diverse set of row and consumer crop plants. The successful candidate will be expected to apply their expert knowledge of DNA repair to the Pairwise tool portfolio to improve function and understanding of existing tools and to develop new genome editing strategies. The DNA repair scientist will be responsible for developing and managing projects that improve genome editing outcomes through manipulation of DNA repair pathways, in addition to applying molecular techniques directly in the lab. They will work in a fast-paced research environment utilizing a mammalian cell system for tool optimization and improvement before deploying that knowledge into plant systems. In addition, they will be expected to be a key member of the Molecular Biology vector design and cloning pipeline, assisting other team members in the design and assembly of tool vectors. They will work in a highly collaborative, cross-functional environment towards team and company goals where their contributions will be critical to helping Pairwise meet technology and product development goals, and building a culture where science is fun.

Essential Functions:

• Collaborate across R&D to drive discovery of new technologies and optimizations that increase the efficiency of precise gene editing through DNA repair, recombination, or engineering, translating discoveries into plant systems. 

• Develop and lead projects around DNA repair to increase our understanding of genome editing and develop new genome editing tool capabilities.

• In coordination with other members of the team, design and build genome editing vectors as needed for the trait pipeline.

• Evaluate existing tool performance in the context of DNA repair to advise tool strategy and deployment to increase editing performance.

• Train and mentor research associates, senior research associates, and research scientists in technical excellence. 

Required Education & Experience:

• PhD in Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Molecular Genetics, Cell Biology or related field with preference for a demonstrated track record of success in understanding and affecting eukaryotic DNA repair pathways (plant experience not required). PhD strongly preferred, or master’s plus work experience with proven ability to design and execute scientifically rigorous experiments and to effectively communicate scientific concepts and data to technical and non-technical audiences.

• Track record of excellence in formulating and executing research leading to novel insights, preferably utilizing gene editing techniques.

• Demonstrated ability to lead projects and contribute collaboratively in a cross functional environment.

• Command of molecular biology methodologies and enzymology used in nucleic acid manipulations, including CRISPR/Cas.

• Knowledge and experience keeping accurate scientific records and notebooks such as working in Benchling or similar LIMs environment.

• Experience and knowledge in laboratory safe practices, including use of PPE, SDSs and proper handling and disposal of laboratory waste.


• 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.

Don’t meet every single requirement? Studies have shown that women and people of color are less likely to apply to jobs unless they meet every single qualification. At Pairwise we are dedicated to building a diverse, inclusive and authentic workplace, so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyways. You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.

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