Principal Scientist, Biostatistics

Upper Gwynedd, PA
Nov 01, 2018
Required Education
Position Type
Full time

Merck & Co., Inc. Kenilworth, N.J., U.S.A. known as Merck in the United States and Canada, is a global health care leader with a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines, vaccines and animal health products. The difference between potential and achievement lies in the spark that fuels innovation and inventiveness; this is the space where Merck has codified its legacy for over a century. Merck’s success is backed by ethical integrity, forward momentum, and an inspiring mission to achieve new milestones in global healthcare.

Merck is on a quest for cures and is committed to being the world’s premier, most research-intensive biopharmaceutical company. Today, we’re doubling down on this goal. Merck Research Laboratories is a true scientific research facility of tomorrow, and will take Merck’s leading discovery capabilities and world-class small molecule and biologics R&D expertise to create breakthrough science that radically changes the way we approach serious diseases. 

This position is for a principal scientist in biostatistics.  The candidate should have a solid knowledge of statistical methodology, experimental design, computing software and data management; a general understanding of worldwide regulatory requirements; and with good clinical trial experience in Phase I to Phase III trials.  The knowledge must be sufficient to ensure that sound scientific principles and statistical methods applied to designing and analyzing clinical trials in support of worldwide regulatory submissions.

This position involves interaction with Medical, Data Coordination, Statistical Programming, Merck Research Laboratories scientists and Regulatory staffs in designing and analyzing clinical trials and coordinating the statistical activities for clinical trial projects; and may lead a group of statistical or programming staff assigned to a development project as needed. More specifically, 

Develops, coordinates, and provides biostatistical support for drug projects under the supervision of management.  Lead a team of staff assigned to the project as needed.  

This includes the following activities: 

  • Is involved in early or late clinical development planning (EDP/LDP) to ensure that study designs are consistent with program objectives and meet worldwide regulatory and marketing needs. 
  • Independently identifies and anticipates technical or other potential problems arising in the design, conduct, and analysis of clinical trials, proposes solutions, and carries them out. 
  • Develops individual protocols and data analysis plans and independently determines appropriate statistical methodology for data analysis. 
  • Participates in Worksheet development, database (collector and view) design meetings to ensure that the data evaluated are free of bias, contain maximum information (minimum variance), and satisfy analysis requirements. 
  • Determines the statistical programming needs and organizes the programming activities to ensure that all programs meet analysis requirements, internal standard operating procedures, validation, and external regulatory requirements 
  • Evaluates appropriateness of available software for planned analyses and ascertains needs for potential program development of novel statistical methodology. 
  •  Analyzes data and interprets results from experiments to meet objectives of the study protocol.  Independently applies and implements basic and complex techniques to these analyses.   
  • Prepares oral and written reports to effectively communicate results of clinical trials to the project team, Merck Management, regulatory agencies, or individual investigators. 
  • Provides responses to queries relating to study design, analysis, and interpretation posed by the clinical monitors, regulatory agencies, or investigators.  
  • Is responsible for ensuring the accuracy of Statistical Review Aids submitted to regulatory agencies. 
  • Participates with management in discussions with corresponding technical personnel at regulatory agencies and with investigators concerning proposed or ongoing studies.
  • Collaborates in publication of research results in areas of applications. 
  • Independently conducts research on statistical methodology, pursues solutions to various technical problems, adapts known methods and develops new methods. 
  • Maintains technical skills and increases own knowledge of new methods or areas of applications by reading journals and attending professional society meetings. 
  • Presents own research at meetings and seminars.  
  • Communicates with statisticians outside Merck concerning technical problems. 
  • Participates in departmental activities including recruiting and training other statisticians, providing statistical training for non-statistical groups, department research effort, and other committee works, etc., as needed.


Education Minimum Requirement:   

  • Ph.D  (preferred ) or Master's degree in Biostatistics or Statistics 

Required Experience and Skills:  

  • With a Master's degree, a minimum of 9 years relevant work experience; with a Ph.D, a minimum of 6 years relevant work experience.

Preferred Experience and Skills: 

  • Scientific leadership in design and analysis of clinical trials; 
  • Experience with regulatory filing for approval of drug/vaccine products; 
  • Oncology experience and/or regulatory submission experience strongly preferred.

Your role at Merck is integral to helping the world meet new breakthroughs that affect generations to come, and we’re counting on your skills and inventiveness to help make meaningful contributions to global medical advancement. At Merck, we’re inventing for life. 

If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request to

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully: 

Merck & Co., Inc. is not accepting unsolicited assistance from search firms for this employment opportunity.  Please, no phone calls or emails.  All resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at Merck via email, the Internet or in any form and/or method without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of Merck.  No fee will be paid in the event the candidate is hired by Merck as a result of the referral or through other means.

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