Ludwig Cancer Research is an international collaborative network of acclaimed scientists that has pioneered cancer research and landmark discovery for more than 40 years. Ludwig combines basic science with the ability to translate its discoveries and conduct clinical trials to accelerate the development of new cancer diagnostics and therapies. Since 1971, Ludwig has invested nearly $2.7 billion in life-changing science through the not-for-profit Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research and the six U.S.-based Ludwig Centers.

Scientists at the Lausanne Branch focus on tumor immunology and immunotherapy. This includes the mechanisms by which tumors thwart immune attack and the development of novel immunotherapies, especially those in which the treatment is tailored to a patient’s cancer—such as dendritic cell vaccines and therapies that involve the manipulation and reinfusion of a patient’s T cells.

The laboratory of Dr. George Coukos at Ludwig Lausanne comprises an international group of highly motivated research associates, post-doctoral fellows, students and technicians. The T-cell engineering team focuses heavily on the development of clinically translatable immunotherapy-based projects, with strong emphasis on protocol development and optimization. There is an on-site GMP facility under construction in Epalinges and a variety of clinical trials under the direction of Dr. Coukos are underway and planned at the CHUV. Thus, this post offers the opportunity to work on exciting projects that have the potential to be translated to the clinic and have an important impact on cancer patients.

The HI-TIDE T-cell engineering team of Dr. Melita Irving in the Coukos laboratory is seeking a Pre-Clinical Research Associate. The position will start as a 1-year contract beginning November 1, 2017, however, candidates interested in a long-term commitment are also encouraged to apply.

The Associate will evaluate various combinatorial cancer immunotherapies (CAR/TCR T-cell transfer, check-point blockade, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, etc.) that have been developed by the team and are of strong interest for clinical translation. The position will involve the screening of novel compounds, but will not include an independent research program. The candidate will work closely with the project leader, post-docs and PhD students, to ensure robust and reproducible in vivo testing. A small group of technicians will provide further support. The candidate will help co-ordinate mice in PyRAT and take a leadership role in writing various reports and authorizations for the lab pertaining to in vivo work.

Tumor models include both syngeneic ones like B16 melanoma in C57BL/6 mice, and human tumors/cell lines engrafted in NSG mice. Tumor control by imaging and/or caliper measurement, tumor microenvironment evaluation pre- and post-treatment, and immune response to therapy will be characterized. Blood, lymph node, tumor and organ extractions will be made. Frequently used in vitro methods will include primary T-cell culture (both human and mouse), microscopy, multi-colour flow cytometry for T-cell phenotyping etc., pPCR etc.

The ideal candidate will possess the following qualifications:

  • PhD or post-doctoral experience in cancer research and immunology.
  • Expertise in T-cell biology and tumor immuno-biology.
  • Extensive hands-on experience with pre-clinical in vivo tumor models and cancer immunotherapy.
  • LTK1 training or equivalent for working with animals in Switzerland. LTK2 certification also desirable but training can be completed upon hiring.
  • Background in T-cell engineering desirable but not required.
  • Strongly motivated, good communication skills and team spirit.
  • Attention to detail, capable of trouble-shooting, working under pressure and meeting deadlines.
  • Fluent spoken and written English is required.

Interested candidates should send a CV, a letter of motivation and contact information for 2-3 references to


Lausanne Branch