Jobs of the Future in the Life Sciences Industry


As technology is ever-evolving, it stands to reason that many of the jobs in the pharma industry today will also change as the pages of the calendar flip. A research project conducted by Australia’s Deakin University shows some of the potential jobs that could be available.

While many of the positions outlined in the university’s 100 Jobs of the Future center around various modes of technology, the report pointed to several health-centered jobs. Many of the jobs will be required to be well-versed in interpreting big data. BioSpace will highlight these roles that could be of key interest to the biotech and pharma industries.

Data-Based Medical Diagnostician – People who move into this field will specialize in “making sense of data in order to make medical diagnoses in complex cases of where the patient has mysterious symptoms.” According to the Future Jobs description, the diagnostician will bring together massive amounts of data from numerous sources, including wearable implants, environmental monitoring devices, various tests that have been conducted by medical practices, genetic profiles and life histories. The individuals in these roles will have to sift through countless reams of data, but will likely be assisted by artificial intelligence, which will scan the documents and look for abnormalities or connecting data. Once a diagnosis has been narrowed, the diagnostician will then relay that information to treating physicians.

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Genetics Coach – Working alongside genetic engineers and health care teams, genetic coaches will provide support to people regarding genetic profiles. In short, once a genetic profile of a patient has been conducted, the genetic coach will help the patient understand what the test results mean and how they can be used in plotting a health plan. The coaches are also expected to be able to provide guidance to patients regarding potential genetic engineering options for medical conditions. People who enter this field will need to be well-versed in genetics, as well as be up-to-date on current gene editing techniques and genetic engineering.

Health Shaper – An individual who enters this field will work with clients to “build health solutions customized to their lives and needs.” The Health Shaper will use technology that genetically profiled clients. This profile will bring together previous health data from each of the clients and make use of environmental monitoring and behavioral tracking. Much like a health coach, the Health Shaper will help clients prevent illnesses “through crafting comprehensive individualized health solution with the aim of reducing illness in the community.”

Memory Optimizer – A role that seems more suited to a science fiction film at the moment, the Memory Optimizer will have to help people be able to sort through all of the information at their disposal and sort out what is insignificant in order to remember those things that are important. According to the Future Jobs report, the Memory Optimizer will augment people’s memory capacities through digital implant technologies. The researchers noted that those who enter this field will have to be careful with the technologies at their disposal due to “serious psychological and cognitive processing consequences.”

Nutri-Gutome Consultant – This role will deal with the human digestive tract and the microbiome associated with it. The people in this field, the report says, will become known as “gut-bug keepers.” Their role will be to primarily monitor the bacteria in the microbiome and ensure that it’s working optimally. If an imbalance is found, the gut-bug keepers will develop a plan to intervene and ensure a rebalancing of the microbiome, which is essential not only for digestions, but also plays a key role in immune regulation and brain function. People in this field will work with body sensors and algorithm analysis.

Virtual Surgeon – Another seeming far-off job, the Virtual Surgeon will play a key role in the future due to the changing nature of this field. The researchers speculate that due to the personalized health shaping of the future, as well as genetic engineering, surgery as we know if today will not be as necessary. But, when surgery is required virtual surgeons will become a norm. Rather than having a doctor stand over a patient and manually wield a scalpel, or other surgical tool, Virtual Surgeons will be able to operate remotely through advances in robotic surgeries, such as the Da Vinci system that is currently used in many operating rooms. The surgeons will be able to manipulate the robotic devices perform the minimally-invasive procedures from elsewhere.

Bioprinting Engineers – People in this field will be proficient in using 3D printing technology to make organic materials that can be used by people, including new skin, bone, muscle, cartilage and potentially internal organs. People in this role will not only have strong engineering skills, but will also have to be versed in STEM learning and work well with the medical community.

Other jobs of the future will also be incorporated by the pharma industry, particularly those positions dealing with artificial intelligence and machine learning. Companies across the globe are already adding specialists in this field and more are sure to come. There are several positions of the future that will ensure the continued development of these fields that will enable biotech and pharma companies to continue to harness their powers for drug development. Jobs of the future in this area will include Algorithm Interpreters, Data Farmers, Data Storage Solutions Designers and Machine Learning Developers.

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