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Director of Research

Janux Therapeutics
San Diego, CA
Start date
Mar 21, 2023

View more

Regulatory, Research/Documentation, Science/R&D, Research
Required Education
Position Type
Full time
Biotech Beach

Under the direction of the Head of Research and Development, the Director of Research will lead the execution of the strategy for discovery research activities related to the novel applications of Janux’s proprietary TRACTr and TRACIr platforms. The incumbent is expected to be a roll-up-the-sleeves scientific leader executing and overseeing the development of multiple programs that support Janux’s pipeline expansion from inception through lead optimization and development compound nomination, with an emphasis on target validation, assay development, and development compound nomination. This role will be responsible for preclinical target validation and early-stage drug discovery efforts as part of a truly integrated R&D team. A successful incumbent will thus need to develop a broad and technical understanding of Janux research, discovery, and development activities, along with an excellent understanding of the research and development goals of the business.


Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  • Accountable for executing the company's immuno-oncology research strategy, with a focus on target validation, lead generation, lead optimization, and development compound nomination culminating in the delivery of novel drug candidates to manufacturing followed by clinical development teams.
  • Lead the development and execution of assays and studies to enable Janux’s proprietary TRACTr and TRACIr platforms and support drug candidate nomination and selection.
  • Amalgamate emergent data across interdepartmental teams in order to identify, triage, and rank order lead molecules for multiple programs as they advance toward development compound nominations in parallel.
  • Lead strategy and execution of studies to differentiate lead compounds via biological and physicochemical molecular properties in order to nominate a development candidate
  • Organize and communicate data to support Janux’s expanding intellectual property portfolio as well as external collaborations and external due diligence 
  • Deliver on the promise of immunotherapies by evaluating novel applications of our platform technologies through integrated assessment of technical and biological risk and value opportunity.
  • Define and articulate preclinical and clinical portfolio risk exposure, expansion opportunities and key portfolio catalysts to drive additional investment in early discovery programs.
  • Effectively communicate with colleagues and internal and external stakeholders; create and present research updates and provide strategic input to team/company meetings.
  • Contributes to INDs and/or its supplements to provide preclinical or non-clinical data required for successful outcomes.
  • Efficiently accomplish project goals on time and within budget.
  • Manage, develop, and empower a team of internal scientists within the department; outline and communicate team goals clearly and efficiently.
  • As required, manage relationships with external CROs and/or CDMO’s tasked with support of Janux preclinical studies. This may include CRO/CDMO study-related activities through IND and IND assembly and submissions.
  • Other duties as deemed necessary.


Required Skills and Qualifications:

  • Ph.D. required in a clinical and/or research discipline with preferred training in oncology, cancer biology, immunology, engineering, and/or another related field.
  • Minimum 8+ years of experience within biotech and/or pharmaceutical organizations.
  • Proven track record in initiating and progressing novel therapeutic targets through validation, drug discovery, and pre-clinical development.
  • Experience with a variety of assay platforms, and the ability to develop innovative and robust assays to support a drug development program designed to tackle oncological diseases. 
  • Familiarity with a broad array of human and mouse models relevant to oncology.
  • Track record of innovative and impactful research as evidenced by a strong publication record and
  • Proven experience leading pre-clinical development from inception through IND.
  • Excellent people manager and mentor of scientific staff to build high-performing teams and a willingness to work on a multi-disciplinary R&D team.
  • Exceptional written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to thrive in an entrepreneurial, fast-paced, solution-oriented, and highly collaborative environment.
  • Independent, creative, detail-orientated, and a critical thinker.



In addition to a competitive base salary ranging from $180,000 to $210,000, we offer stock options, a stock purchase plan (ESPP) and a target bonus. Janux also provides a comprehensive benefits package for our employees and their families, which includes medical, dental, vision, and supplemental disability insurance. Relocation assistance may also be available.

Please note that the base salary range is a guideline, and individual total compensation will vary based on factors such as qualifications, skill level, competencies, internal equity and work location.


Job Type: Full-time



  • 401K
  • Medical insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Vision insurance
  • Supplemental disability insurance plans
  • Flexible schedule
  • Life insurance
  • Flexible vacation
  • Sick time
  • Incentive stock option plan
  • Relocation Assistance



Monday to Friday


Work authorization:

United States (Required)


Additional Compensation:

Annual targeted bonus %


Work Location:

Onsite; San Diego, CA



Janux Therapeutics, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to providing a work environment free of harassment and discrimination based upon a protected category, as well as an environment free from retaliation for protected activity.

Janux Therapeutics is a clinical stage immuno-oncology company developing drugs for a variety of solid tumor cancers. Janux is leveraging its innovative and proprietary tumor-activated discovery platform to efficiently develop product candidates designed to generate tumor-specific immune responses to attack and kill tumors without destroying a patient’s healthy tissue.

As a biotechnology company based in San Diego, Janux is an active part of a vibrant and growing biotech ecosystem. We are looking for energetic and talented people with a desire to work in a fast-paced and dynamic team environment. We believe that the whole team contributes to the overall mission. We succeed as a team, and we grow as a team.

Notice to Recruiters and Third-Party Agencies

The Talent Acquisition team manages the recruitment and employment process for Janux. To protect the interests of all parties involved, Janux will only accept resumes from a recruiter once a fully-executed search agreement is in place. Agencies are hereby specifically directed not to contact Janux employees directly in an attempt to present candidates. Janux will consider any candidate for whom an Agency and/or Recruiter has submitted an unsolicited resume to have been referred, free of any charges or fees.

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