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Research Associate - Protein Purification and Characterization

Sunflower Therapeutics

Sunflower Therapeutics

Hingham, MA, USA
Posted on Saturday, May 20, 2023

Research Associate, Protein Purification and Characterization

Sunflower Therapeutics PBC
Medford, MA | Full-time
Start Date: June / July 2023

Position Overview: Sunflower Therapeutics is currently recruiting a motivated and highly organized individual to support its mission to deliver protein manufacturing solutions that anyone can use for creating innovative new medicines, food products, and other bio-based products. Sunflower is advancing “right-sized” and efficient approaches to democratize protein manufacturing using strain engineering, integrated process development, and automated small footprint facilities. Reporting to the Director of Research and Development, the Protein Purification and Characterization Research Associate will be responsible for developing, optimizing, and evaluating processes to purify recombinant proteins, including assessment of expressed protein quality using biophysical and functional characterization. This individual will engage in research activities to support the development of processes for benchtop and pilot scale manufacturing platforms, including but not limited to: development, optimization, and characterization of chromatographic purification methods for recombinant proteins and development and routine performance of techniques for protein quantification and characterization (SDS-PAGE, ELISA, etc). As Sunflower grows, the Protein Purification and Characterization Research Associate will contribute to the continuous improvement of Sunflower’s purification and protein analytical capabilities.



  • Assists in the development of protein purification processes, including integrated (straight-through) chromatographic processes, through modern techniques
  • Purifies proteins using common chromatography methods (ion exchange, hydrophobic interaction, multimodal) using FPLC and/or high-throughput platforms
  • Performs analytical techniques such as SDS-PAGE and ELISA to characterize protein identity, purity and function
  • Troubleshoots and optimizes methods for purification and protein characterization
  • Maintains laboratory equipment, space, and supplies related to purification
  • Designs, implements and maintains standard operating procedures and data records related to protein purification and characterization
  • Communicates experimental planning and results with both internal and external stakeholders
  • Supports writing of reporting documents, technical documents, and any other necessary documentation
  • Champions innovation and drives implementation thereof to reduce the time and cost to develop processes for the manufacturing of proteins for innovators around the world


Desired Qualifications

We believe the experience and capabilities outlined below will lead to success in this position. We recognize, however, that our mission to enable more proteins to reach patients and consumers worldwide is a significant challenge and will require innovative solutions. As such, we will consider how the diversity of our candidates can help us reach this mission.

  • Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific discipline (Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Chemistry, Biology)
  • 1 – 3 years of relevant experience in academic and/or industrial lab setting
  • Aligned with Sunflower’s mission and values
  • Prior experience with chromatographic protein purification methods (ion
    exchange, hydrophobic interaction, multimodal, etc) and equipment (AKTA or
    similar) required
  • Knowledge of protein analytical techniques (such as SDS-PAGE, ELISA, etc)
  • Strong analytical and organizational skills, including meticulous attention to
    detail and multi-tasking capabilities
  • Enthusiastic, collaborative, and proactive attitude
  • Willingness to be a hands-on problem solver
  • Ability to easily adapt to rapidly changing company and program needs
  • Focused on continued skill building and career development