Scientist, in vitro pharmacology, immuno-oncology

San Diego, California
Feb 14, 2019
Required Education
Position Type
Full time

Position Summary

Rakuten Aspyrian is searching for a highly motivated individual to serve as a scientific and technical lead for Rakuten Aspyrian’s preclinical immuno-oncology research projects. In this role, he/she will contribute to the multidisciplinary research team by designing and executing studies evaluating efficacy and mechanism of action of lead candidate products through in vivo pharmacology and ex vivo studies. This individual will be expected to participate and present data at weekly research meetings. As the scientific and technical lead, the successful candidate is also expected to train other members of the multidisciplinary research team in scientific, technical, and operational aspects. In alignment with the Rakuten Aspyrian company culture, the individual will be expected to perform these duties in a highly collaborative manner with other members of the multidisciplinary research team, and will also have the opportunity to learn and grow in other team functions.


Key Duties and Responsibilities 

• Serve as a scientific and technical leader for in vivo, and ex vivo pharmacology studies to demonstrate efficacy and characterize mechanism of action of lead targets. 

• Directly responsible for designing study plans in collaboration with the Translational Research team, executing experimental activities, generating and analyzing the experimental data, and presenting the data and conclusions to the Translational Research team.

• Assist with large-scale cell culture for tumor implants into mouse models as needed.

• Train and support additional personnel to manage and execute complex experimental testing and models.

• Resolve scientific or technical challenges with sophisticated approaches including, as needed, the development and implementation of new assays or new models to test hypotheses and answer complex scientific problems.

• Review and propose the implementation of new scientific and/or technical approaches, technologies and techniques to advance Rakuten Aspyrian’s research projects.

• Responsible for day-to-day vivarium and laboratory operations, including routine husbandry or lab maintenance tasks as needed.

• In collaboration with the facilities manager and safety officers, establish, train, and ensure team members operate in compliance with animal care regulations and implement IACUC protocols.

• Maintain a sterile laboratory environment.

• Keep accurate records and enter data into an electronic laboratory notebook in a timely manner.

• Follow laboratory safety guidelines and practices.

• Contribute to the writing of preclinical reports to support regulatory filings.


Desired Education, Skills and Experience

• Ph.D. with minimum 1 year of immuno-oncology pharmaceutical industry experience, or M.S. with minimum 12+ years of immuno-oncology pharmaceutical industry experience utilizing in vivo pharmacology models.  

• Deep understanding of immunology, especially in the cancer immunology, as demonstrated by publications in top tier scientific journals.

• Superior technical expertise with standard in vivo techniques, including dosing and sampling routes (e.g., po, ip, sc, iv dosing; submandibular, retro-orbital, cardiac bleeds; necropsy and organ/tumor harvest) and tumor measurements is required. Competency with mouse surgical techniques (stereotactic implants, orthotopic implants, etc.) will also be highly valued.

• Experience with both immunocompetent and immunodeficient models is required.

• Technical excellence with in vitro techniques such as sterile cell culture (up to BSL2), cytotoxicity assays, and immunoassays (e.g., multicolor flow cytometry, immunofluorescence, ELISA) will be high preferred.

• Experience with ex vivo techniques and analysis (tissue extraction, single cell dissociation, multi-color flow cytometry to analyze tumor infiltrates) will be highly preferred.  

• Experience working with antibody-based therapeutics will be highly valued.

• Excellent communication skills, organizational skills and the ability to work independently and in a team environment are essential.

• Expected to coordinate cross-functional activities with other departments in a highly collaborative manner.

• Excellent emotional Intelligence and sound character. 

• Able to follow SOPs and manage multiple simultaneous tasks with minimal supervision.

• Able to occasionally work weekends as study schedules dictate.

• Alignment with Aspyrian Values.

• Must be able to lift up to 25 pounds.