Senior Associate Scientist, Cell Process Development, Sickle Cell Disease Program

Bluebird Bio, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States

integrated product platforms with broad therapeutic potential

On January 11, 2021, we announced our intent to separate our severe genetic disease and oncology businesses into differentiated and independent publicly traded companies. We will retain focus on severe genetic disease (SGD) and will launch our oncology business (“Oncology Newco”) as a new entity, with the completed transition expected by the end of 2021.



At bluebird, only two things matter - patients and our people. When you join the nest, you're not just landing a new gig, you become a part of a flock that's soaring to new heights. We’re 1100+ doers, thinkers and collaborators across the globe with a strong sense of our values and our purpose. Our innovation and sustainability are rooted in the diversity of our teams and results are achieved through cooperation and the incorporation of multiple points of view. This is personal and we approach every challenge with radical care. The time is now to rise up and recode the science, the systems, and the status quo.


bluebird bio’s Cellular Process Development team for Sickle Cell Disease is a group of birds in Pharmaceutical Sciences designing processes to manufacture high quality stem cells in an innovative and scalable way for our patients. We develop the gene therapy manufacturing platform and chaperone it from pre-clinical to commercial manufacturing phases in collaboration with other teams across Pharmaceutical Sciences, Research and Clinical. With one approved product (Zynteglo™) and multiple clinical stage candidates, there is a wealth of growth opportunities for driven scientists to make a significant impact in patients’ lives. Come join our incredibly talented team of birds and learn more about how you can drive scientific advancements that ultimately serve patients with gene-modified stem cell products.


The sickle cell disease cellular process development team is responsible for developing cellular drug product processes and introducing new technologies for stem cell-based therapies. The focus of this position is to drive the development of an innovative and scalable manufacturing processes for our hematopoietic stem cell therapy for sickle cell disease. Candidates will have the opportunity to apply their experience and understanding of cell biology, cell culture, cell-based analytics, general laboratory techniques and/or cGMP operations in this role. Candidates should have a proven ability to innovate, collaborate, lead and drive scientific advancement in a fast-paced environment, and be passionate about developing innovative therapeutics that can transform patients’ lives.
As a Process & Analytical Development bird reporting to Associate Director, Drug Product Enabling Technology you'll help to bring more patients their bluebird days by:

  • Developing process improvements for unit operations for hematopoietic stem cell-based clinical and commercial programs.
  • Designing and performing experiments involving the isolation, transduction, expansion and cryopreservation of gene modified hematopoietic stem cells for the treatment for hematological malignancies.
  • Analyizing data, interpreting scientific results, authoring protocols and reports, and presenting scientific data to stakeholders.
  • Independently managing and executing on key project workstreams.
  • Working collaboratively with members from other groups including cell research, analytics, quality, and regulatory functions.
  • Providing critical lab support while working in a collaborative team environment.
  • Mentoring and guiding junior scientists in the design and execution of their work and career development.
  • Maintaining accurate and reliable record keeping including database management, batch records, notebooks, and all other pertinent documentation
  • Hands-on lab-based position requiring a flexible schedule based on experimental work (occasional weekend work may be required).


You’re the bird we’re looking for if you:

  • Have a BS/MS in molecular biology, cell biology, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, bioengineering, biochemistry or related degree with 5+ years of industry experience or relevant academic experience (BS) or 3+ years of industry experience (MS).
  • Expertise in aseptic tissue/cell culture is required. Experience with the culturing of primary human hematopoietic stem cells is preferred.
  • Strong background in a variety of biological assays such as FACS, ELISA, and qPCR is preferred.
  • Experience with large scale, closed system manufacturing of therapeutic cell and/or gene therapy products from whole blood, apheresis, or bone marrow is highly preferred.
  • Familiarity with common cellular therapy equipment such as Sepax, controlled rate freezers, and cell separation technologies (CliniMACS and other technologies) is preferred.
  • Demonstrated experience with DOE models and background in using statistical software (JMP, Minitab, Prism or others) is desirable.
  • Experience with leading technical projects within a team setting is preferred.
  • Experience with risk-based assessments such as RCA, FMEA, and streamlining processes is preferred.
  • Ability to manage priorities and make decisions in a fast-paced environment to ensure deliverables are completed in a timely fashion.

All our birds embrace the principles of the bluebird bio culture:  b colorful, b cooperative, b yourself.

bluebird bio is deeply committed to fostering an environment where diversity and inclusion are not only valued, but prioritized. We believe a diverse and inclusive community empowers us to act courageously, care deeply, and dream boldly to impact people in big ways.  Diverse viewpoints bring diverse capabilities which strengthen our focus and fuel our growth.

bluebird is proud to be an equal opportunity employer, seeking to create a welcoming and diverse environment.  All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status or any other applicable legally protected characteristics.

About Bluebird Bio

About us We are leading the gene therapy revolution. Our integrated product platforms encompass gene therapy, cancer immunotherapy and gene editing – providing us with the potential to treat, and hopefully cure, a broad range of serious diseases. We have a lot of energy, and it’s not just the abundance of coffee that keeps us going. Find out what sparks our excitement and inspires us every day.

Want to learn more about Bluebird Bio? Visit Bluebird Bio's website.