Senior Scientist: iPSC-derived disease models

DefiniGEN

Closing Date: 23/07/2022

Salary: Competitive plus benefits including pension and share options

Location: Babraham Research Campus, Cambridge, UK

Type: Permanent, Full time

Start: Immediate

Application process: Please submit CV and covering letter to careers@definigen.com

Position Summary

DefiniGEN are seeking an experienced, highly motivated individual to lead the company’s liver disease model development programme.

About us

DefiniGEN were founded in 2013 as a spin-out from Cambridge University. We use a patented differentiation process in combination with in-house gene editing to differentiate human induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSC) to hepatocytes which are then used to support our client’s work in developing next generation liver therapeutics. Typically we generate models of liver disease using our technology and screen client therapeutics for activity using our in-house phenotyping capability. As our business expands we are seeking to develop further disease models and supporting bioassays and are seeking an experienced scientist who can lead and drive this critical business function.

About you

This position will have two key functions within the business. Firstly you will lead the development of DefiniGEN’s future portfolio of hepatocyte disease models and supporting phenotypic endpoints. Secondly you will be a key knowledge resource within the organisation for scientists conducting phenotypic screening and for our sales team in client and project on-boarding meetings. Therefore, expertise in iPSC-derived disease models and their characterisation is essential for this position.

The delivery of new disease models and the conduct of client projects will be pivotal to the success of this role. Furthermore, DefiniGEN’s core business is using cell-based bioassay to demonstrate the potency of client-supplied compounds. Typically these assays are bespoke and require significant scientific input in terms of assay design, conduct and data interpretation. The post holder will be expected to have full scientific oversight for the design and conduct of these studies and the interpretation of the resulting data to ensure maximum value to our clients.

Key Roles and Responsibilities

• To direct the development of DefiniGEN’s disease model portfolio and supporting phenotypic assays.

• To provide advice and expertise on the execution of well-controlled in vitro experiments to evaluate therapeutic compounds (at low- to high throughput scale).

• To ensure DefiniGEN remains at the forefront of technology by the continued optimisation of differentiation protocols to generate hepatocyte-like cells from iPSCs.

• Provide technical advice, guidance and mentoring to less experienced members of the team.

• Act as the company expert for client-specific and internal project development troubleshooting related enquiries.

• Represent the business in client meetings and at scientific conferences.

Requirements:

• An advanced degree (PhD or equivalent) in biological science or related field, with 5+ years of experience in disease modelling (E)

• Experience in maintaining and differentiating iPSC lines into disease relevant cell types (E)

• Strong track record of successful cell-based assay development to support drug discovery platform and compound screening (E)

• Familiarity with genetic disease models (D)

• Familiarity with gene engineering tools and technologies (CRISPR/Cas9, ZFNs, etc.) and gene delivery (AAV vectors, etc.) (D)

• Familiarity with the use of automation for cell-based bioassays (D)

• Ability to work both independently and collaboratively in a team-science environment (E)

E – Essential, D - Desirable