Cures Start Here. At Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, home to three Nobel laureates, interdisciplinary teams of world-renowned scientists seek new and innovative ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Fred Hutch’s pioneering work in bone marrow transplantation led to the development of immunotherapy, which harnesses the power of the immune system to treat cancer with minimal side effects. An independent, nonprofit research institute based in Seattle, Fred Hutch houses the nation’s first and largest cancer prevention research program, as well as the clinical coordinating center of the Women’s Health Initiative and the international headquarters of the HIV Vaccine Trials Network. Careers Start Here.
At Fred Hutch, we believe that the innovation, collaboration, and rigor that result from diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission of eliminating cancer and related diseases. We seek employees who bring different and innovative ways of seeing the world and solving problems. Fred Hutch is in pursuit of becoming an antiracist organization. We are committed to ensuring that all candidates hired share our commitment to diversity, antiracism, and inclusion.
Two Post-Doctoral Research Fellow positions are immediately available with Dr. Anthony Rongvaux, Ph.D. at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The Rongvaux Lab uses state of the art humanized murine models to studies innate immune responses specific to the human species. This research has applications in both cancer and infectious disease modalities, and ranges from fundamental research to the development of novel drugs and immunotherapies.
Innate immunity and cancer
Most cancer deaths happen because the cancer has spread to distant sites throughout a patient’s body—a phenomenon called metastasis. Why does metastasis occur, and how can we stop it to save lives?
It has been known for over three decades that a high density of macrophages in the tumor microenvironment correlates with metastatic progression and poor patient survival. However, the mechanisms by which macrophages support cancer remain incompletely understood. Our lab has developed unique humanized murine models for immuno-oncology studies. With these models, we have identified physiologically relevant macrophage populations involved in tumor support. We are currently studying the fundamental biology of these macrophages, and developing new therapeutic agents to target them.
Innate immunity to HIV infection
Over 35 million people are living with HIV worldwide. About 40% of them don’t have access to antiretroviral therapies, resulting in over half a million deaths annually.
Acute HIV infection induces a rapid inflammatory response, characterized by the production of large amounts of cytokines. However, this immune response is ineffective at controlling the virus. As a consequence, the virus can establish chronic infection and, if not treated, progress to a lethal disease. Understanding why the natural immune response to HIV infection does not confer protection, could help us design more effective vaccine strategies.
Using state of the art humanized murine models, single-cell RNA sequencing and genome editing, the postdoctoral fellows will study the mechanisms by which the immune system detects, and responds to transformed or infected cells. Understanding how the immune response fails to restore homeostasis is a prerequisite to design novel therapeutic or vaccine strategies.