Senior/Principal Scientist (Process Development)
Voyager Therapeutics (Nasdaq: VYGR) is a biotechnology company dedicated to breaking through barriers in gene therapy and neurology. The potential of both disciplines has been constrained by delivery challenges; Voyager is leveraging innovative expertise in capsid discovery and deep neuropharmacology capabilities to address these constraints. Voyager’s TRACER AAV capsid discovery platform has generated novel capsids with high target delivery and blood-brain barrier penetration at low doses, potentially addressing the narrow therapeutic window associated with conventional gene therapy delivery vectors. This platform is fueling alliances with Pfizer Inc., Novartis and Neurocrine Biosciences as well as multiple programs in Voyager’s own pipeline. Voyager’s pipeline includes preclinical programs in Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), each with validated targets and biomarkers to enable a path to rapid potential proof-of-biology. For more information, visit www.voyagertherapeutics.com
Voyager is seeking a highly motivated Principal Scientist to join the TechOps organization to advance our AAV manufacturing platform.
The Principal Scientist will join the Cell and Molecular Biology team in Technical Operations and be responsible for developing and improving Voyager’s AAV expression platform through cell line and expression vector development. The candidate will collaborate with Research Vector Production, Vector Engineering and Novel Capsid Discovery teams regarding new product candidates. They will work closely with the different functions within Technical Operations to evaluate and develop manufacturing processes for selected capsid transgene combinations to advance programs to the clinic. This is an ideal position for a candidate who enjoys problem-solving creatively, can work independently, has a strong work ethic, and thrives in a team-oriented, fast-paced, and cross-disciplinary environment. This is a hands-on role requiring significant presence in the lab as well as some managerial responsibilities.
- Drive the mammalian expression system strategy for TechOps - independently identify, elucidate, and experimentally assess new and existing techniques to fundamentally improve the platform for expression of AAV.
- Drive experimental design, execution, data analysis and technical report authoring associated with development of the expression system.
- Lead cell line development – including cell line engineering, single cell cloning, clone screening and characterization to generate robust and productive cell lines for AAV manufacturing. Define and document workflows for cell line development.
- Hands-on development of plasmids for transient transfection based production of AAV; assessment of alternate expression vectors for the production of AAV.
- Hire, train and manage associates to support development initiatives and portfolio programs
- Represent the Cell and Molecular Biology team on CMC program teams. Manage and execute on program deliverables to ensure completion in accordance with timelines - provide scientific feedback and identify risks associated with ongoing development
- Collaborate with internal and external partner groups to advance scientific initiatives.
- Author appropriate sections of IND filings and regulatory documents to support IND filings.
- Present work at internal meetings and externally at industry conferences; contribute to scientific documentation such as patent applications and publications
Specialized Knowledge & Skills:
· Extensive hands-on experience with molecular biology and cell culture techniques including Gibson Assembly, Golden Gate assembly and traditional methods for manipulation of DNA constructs for recombinant protein production
· Experience with cell line development for recombinant protein production – single cell cloning using automated clone pickers, data collection to demonstrate proof of clonality, methods for screening clones with desirable attributes as well as generation and characterization of cell banks.
· Prior experience working with cell lines for AAV production is highly desired
· Knowledge of cell bank testing requirements for use in GMP manufacturing
· Significant attention to detail and accuracy in developing, reviewing and following protocols, as well as documenting experimental results in technical reports.
- Experience managing scientists is highly desired
· Strong desire to learn new techniques and willingness to work as part of a larger team
· Ability to be productive in a fluid, fast-paced and teamwork oriented environment, work collaboratively on multiple projects and manage competing priorities
· Well developed communication skills – interpersonal, written and presentation skills.
· Demonstrated ability to manage projects in an industrial or academic setting is desirable
· BS, MS or PhD degree in biology, biochemistry or similar field with a strong emphasis in Cell or Molecular Biology
· BS in relevant scientific discipline with 13+ years relevant experience, MS in relevant scientific discipline with 12+ years relevant experience, Ph.D. (or equivalent) in relevant scientific discipline, with 5+ years of industry or relevant experience.