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Scientist, Preclinical Development

Visterra, Inc.
Waltham, MA
Start date
Mar 21, 2023

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Clinical, Clinical Development, Science/R&D, Biology, Immunology
Required Education
Masters Degree/MBA
Position Type
Full time

Job Details

The Scientist, Preclinical Development is responsible for supporting activities related to transitioning drug development candidates from research into early development to enable clinical studies. Visterra is seeking a flexible candidate with broad-based knowledge of immunology; knowledge/experience in antibody therapeutics and preclinical development are preferred but not required.


Reporting to the Senior Scientist in Preclinical Development, this role will be responsible for activities related to drug development candidates. They will be expected to design and perform in vitro and ex vivo cell-based assays in lab to support the evaluation of specificity and safety of drug development candidates. They will assist in advancing the team’s understanding of programs transitioning from research to development, which includes working cross-functionally with research teams to understand the biology of targets, as well as performing independent literature research on target pharmacology, diseases of interest, and key/relevant biomarkers to support program development.


The ideal candidate would have a Ph.D in biochemistry, molecular biology, immunology or related field with 0-3 years of experience post-graduation, although candidates with a B.S. or M.S. in these fields who have at least 5 years of research experience in either academic or biotech settings- particularly those with experience in antibody therapeutics- are also encouraged to apply. This is a full-time position based on-site at Visterra’s facility in Waltham, MA, with approximately 50% of time allocated to working in the lab.



  • Work cross-functionally with research and pharmaceutical sciences teams to support transition of candidates from research to development
  • Conduct specificity/binding experiments, ex vivo cytokine secretion assays, potency and other cell-based functional assays to help characterize and support new programs entering the development phase
  • Review, analyze, interpret and present data at internal and/or cross functional team meetings
  • Provide input on nonclinical strategy to enable first in human studies
  • Write/review study reports to support IND or CTA filings
  • Provide support for regulatory submissions as needed
  • Perform independent literature reviews on relevant diseases, biomarkers, and therapeutics to advance understanding of nonclinical programs
  • Other duties and responsibilities as required by departmental and business needs



  • At least 5 years of research experience, either in an academic or biotech setting; experience with biologics is highly desirable
  • An M.S. or Ph.D. in Immunology, Biology, Biochemistry, or related field is preferable, although candidates with a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree with significant research experience are also encouraged to apply
  • Ability to execute experiments independently, document results, and perform quality review of data from both internal and outsourced studies
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Demonstrated ability to perform as a team player and complete tasks according to established deadlines
  • The ability to think critically, synthesize and extract simple principles from complex datasets, communicate effectively across a broad spectrum of audiences
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Office, including Teams, as well as Prism GraphPad preferred
  • Limited travel to attend conferences and/or industry events that support the candidate’s professional development will be expected (<5%)




We are a team of 100 talented and driven people working passionately and collaboratively to develop a robust pipeline of innovative antibody-based therapies for patients with unmet needs. Our proprietary technology platform powered by our state-of-the-art laboratory enables the design and engineering of precision antibody-based product candidates that specifically bind to, and modulate, key disease targets for the treatment of patients with kidney diseases and other hard-to-treat diseases. Visterra is a subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. of Japan. As a member of the Otsuka family of companies, we have the advantage of being a dynamic, nimble, innovative organization where you can make direct, meaningful impacts while benefiting from the support, stability, and long-term perspective of a 100-year-old global company.


Visterra provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws.


Visterra is a clinical stage biotechnology company committed to developing innovative antibody-based therapies for the treatment of patients with kidney diseases and other hard-to-treat diseases. Our proprietary technology platform enables the design and engineering of precision antibody-based product candidates that specifically bind to, and modulate, key disease targets. Applying this technology to disease targets that are not adequately addressed by traditional therapeutic approaches, we are developing a robust pipeline of novel therapies for patients with unmet needs.


Find Us
275 2nd Avenue

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