Scientist (Nucleic Acids)

South San Francisco, CA
Apr 02, 2021
Biotech Bay
Required Education
Position Type

About Us:

Vaxart is a clinical-stage company developing tablet vaccines based on its proprietary oral vaccine platform. The lead programs are prophylactic oral vaccines for COVID, seasonal influenza, RSV, and norovirus, as well as a therapeutic vaccine for HPV types 16 and 18. Vaxart vaccines are convenient room temperature-stable tablets that are easy to administer, and that eliminates the risk of needle-stick injury and medical waste associated with injectable vaccines. Vaxart is listed on the NASDAQ exchange under ticker symbol VXRT.


Responsible for understanding, designing, executing, and reporting analytical techniques with a focus on nucleic acids for development and manufacture of Ad5 vectors used for oral vaccines. In addition, familiarity with mRNA quantitation, NGS for viral genome and transgene integrity testing, and qPCR or ddPCR for product identity and characterization, as well as host cell residuals quantitation. Evaluate existing methods and develop new methods appropriate for product and process characterization, release testing, and for in-process testing of product and intermediates. The successful candidate will be expected to work with in-house and partnering QC organizations for assay transfer and assay validation, and with the process development group to support process improvements. Responsibilities will also include training and managing junior scientists, setting up a lab and establishing calibration protocols; and effective communication with management. This position is one of 3 group leaders reporting to the Head of Analytical development and focusing on unique analytical areas.


  • Manages lab based analytical development staff and contract service partners to provide assay support for development activities, and product characterization and in process test methods for transfer to manufacturing and QC. Design and execute experimental protocols for assay development.
  • Writes and/or reviews protocols, assay development reports, batch records, standard operating procedures, and other technical reports in support of manufacturing and process tech transfer with a focus on nucleic acids. Assures that results are properly archived and communicated.
  • Responsible for understanding and applying data generated from experiments and literature used to modify/optimize process parameters. Evaluates new technology and procedures.
  • Manages and trains staff as appropriate in laboratory activities. Assures that training and compliance records for themselves and staff are up to date and appropriate. Assures that all safety procedures are followed.
  • Proactively communicates with internal and external stakeholders. Establish and foster relationships with contract manufacturing organizations.


  • M.S. or PhD in Biological Sciences, Pharmaceutics, Engineering or equivalent work experience.
  • Minimum of 6 years of experience in the industry.
  • Minimum of 2 years of management experience.
  • Mammalian cell culture in a GMP environment.
  • Production and purification of viral products.
  • Strong communication and teamwork skills.
  • Ability to gain cooperation of others
  • General or direct supervision to exempt employees and/or skilled nonexempt employees.
  • Knowledge of QC issues.
  • Sterile techniques and hazardous/infectious material handling.

Vaxart offers team members a competitive compensation and benefits package, including a bonus program, stock options, 401K with employer matching, tuition assistance, and work life balance.

Vaxart is an Equal Opportunity Employer and values diversity. We are committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity and affirmative action for all applicants and employees. Equal opportunity and consideration are afforded to all qualified applicants and employees in personnel actions, which include: recruiting and hiring, selection for training, promotion, rates of pay or other compensation, transfer, discipline, demotion, layoff or termination. Vaxart does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, family medical history or genetic information, citizenship, national origin or ancestry, sex, age, physical or mental disability, medical condition, veteran status, military status, or any other basis protected by federal, state or local law, ordinance or regulation.