Associate Principal Scientist, Downstream, Biologics Process Development & Commercialization

Merck & Co.
West Point, Pennsylvania
Aug 21, 2020
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type
Full time

Our Engineers support internal and external manufacturing operations remain operational, continuously improve and innovate. With our extensive range of facilities and environments, our Engineers have opportunities across many diverse areas including Biological, Chemical, Automation, Capital Projects, Maintenance, Safety, Process Development, Technical Services, Utilities and Validation.

As part of Our Company’s Manufacturing Division, within the Manufacturing System Design & Commercialization (MSDC), the Biologics Process Development & Commercialization (BPDC) department provides the technical process leadership and laboratory capabilities in support of late stage pipeline and commercial manufacturing processes for biologics (therapeutic proteins).   For pipeline programs, BPDC supports various commercialization activities, including technology transfer to internal and external manufacturing sites, process validation, and authoring of regulatory submissions.  For commercial programs the scope includes site-to-site process transfers, manufacturing investigations and trend evaluations, process enhancements, next generation process (i.e., post approval) development and process characterization, process validation, and regulatory submission authoring. 

Under the general scientific and administrative direction of Principal Scientist in Downstream and working in conjunction with internal and external partners, this individual will support these late stage and commercial biologics program activities within BPDC. The individual will demonstrate scientific, experimental and tech transfer skills focusing on downstream processing. 

Scope includes:

  • Participates in and/or leads cross-divisional technical teams focusing on late stage clinical process development, characterization, and technology transfer and validation with line-of-sight for licensure and commercialization. 
  • Responsible for laboratory-scale and manufacturing scale studies to support commercial process validation, characterization, and investigation evaluations, including studies performed either in-house or externally.  Provides technical leadership for the design of experiments, data analysis and interpretation, as well as mentoring of junior staff in the execution of internal or management of external laboratory activities.
  • Provides technical leadership in the interpretations of trends observed in commercial process monitoring (e.g., statistical process control (SPC) and/or multivariate analyses (MVA)), and for further technical investigations and process improvement changes
  • Primary focus will be on downstream processing, but with a working knowledge of the various aspects of product manufacture and functional area interdependencies, including cell culture, analytical, and GMP site readiness.
  • Actively interacts with internal and external counterparts.  Represent functional area on cross-functional and cross-divisional teams.
  • Authors required regulatory and technical documentation.  Ensures that process/product are developed and documented according to standard company practices.

Education Minimum Requirement:

  • BS, MS or PhD in Biological Sciences/Chemical Engineering/Biological Engineering/Chemistry with 10 years (for BS), 8 years (for MS), or 4 years (PhD) relevant experience. 

Required Experience and Skills:

  • Technical expertise in purification of biological molecules, including laboratory models for chromatography and filtration systems. 
  • Experience with technology transfer and scale-up of processes to pilot and manufacturing scales for biologics manufacture.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.  Ability to effectively articulate understanding of process science, in order to drive decision making, impact assessments, design of studies, etc, in a multi-disciplinary team environment.

Preferred Experience and Skills:

  • Experience with downstream purification of biological molecules required, with an in-depth knowledge of preparative chromatography, tangential flow filtration, and virus retaining filtration desired.  Demonstrated understanding of the fundamentals and/or modeling of unit operations is a plus.
  • Technical operations experience in the manufacture of biological molecules at the pilot- and/or commercial-scale is a plus. 
  • Prior experience in late stage process development, process characterization including viral clearance studies, process performance qualification and validation, site readiness, batch record reviews, authoring regulatory BLA sections and/or working with external contract organization for development and or manufacturing.
  • Working knowledge of statistical methods for DOE design and data analysis (e.g., JMP or Design Expert software)
  • Working knowledge of statistical process control (SPC), multivariate analysis (MVA), and/or process analytical technologies (PAT) techniques for biologics processes.
  • Working understanding of analytical methods to characterize biologics and /or US/EU regulatory requirements and / or working knowledge of cGMPs is a plus



Who we are …

Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New Jersey, USA is known as “Merck” in the United States, Canada & Puerto Rico. We are known as “MSD” in Europe, Middle East, Africa, Latin America & Asia Pacific. We are a global biopharmaceutical leader with a diverse portfolio of prescription medicines, oncology, vaccines and animal health products.

We are driven by our purpose to develop and deliver innovative products that save and improve lives. With 69,000 employees operating in more than 140 countries, we offer state of the art laboratories, plants and offices that are designed to Inspire our employees as we learn, develop and grow in our careers. We are proud of our 125 years of service to humanity and continue to be one of the world’s biggest investors in Research & Development.

What we look for …

In a world of rapid innovation, we seek brave Inventors who want to make an Impact in all aspects of our business, enabling breakthroughs that will affect generations to come. We encourage you to bring your disruptive thinking, collaborative spirit and diverse perspective to our organization. Together we will continue Inventing For Life, Impacting Lives while Inspiring Your Career Growth.







US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

If you need an accommodation for the application process please email us at
For more information about personal rights under Equal Employment Opportunity, visit:

EEOC Poster

EEOC GINA Supplement​

OFCCP EEO Supplement

OFCCP Pay Transparency Rule



We are an equal opportunity employer, Minority/Female/Disability/Veteran – proudly embracing diversity in all of its manifestations.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully 
Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company.  No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails. 



Employee Status: Regular

Relocation: Domestic/International


VISA Sponsorship: Yes

Travel Requirements: 10%

Flexible Work Arrangements: Flex Time

Shift: Not Indicated

Valid Driving License: No

Number of Openings: 1

Requisition ID: R52600