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Director, Scientific Lead in Ophthalmology Regenerative Cellular Medicine Research

Sumitomo Pharma America
Cambridge, MA
Start date
Sep 15, 2023

View more

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

Director, Scientific Lead in Ophthalmology Regenerative Cellular Medicine Research

Sumitomo Pharma America (SMPA) is focused on delivering therapeutic and scientific breakthroughs in areas of critical patient need spanning psychiatry & neurology, oncology, urology, women’s health, rare disease, and cell & gene therapies. The company’s diverse portfolio includes several marketed products and a robust pipeline of early- to late-stage assets. Building on Sumitomo Pharma’s 125-year legacy of innovation, SMPA leverages proprietary in-house technology platforms and advanced analytics capabilities to accelerate discovery, development, and help bring novel therapies to patients sooner. SMPA is a Sumitomo Pharma company. [For more information, visit]

Job Overview

We are currently seeking a dynamic, highly motivated, and experienced individual for the position of Director, Scientific Lead in Ophthalmology Regenerative Cellular Medicine research. The Director will plan, design, and perform advanced studies to drive retinal regenerative cellular medicine research and development for our Regenerative & Cellular Medicine Office (RACMO) in Watertown, MA. This role will act as lead scientist to actively promote scientific programs with highly specialized ophthalmology expertise across physiological/ pathological science, tissue engineering, molecular biology, gene therapy, translational research, clinical development, surgical practice and standard ocular treatment, and will be responsible to keep up with the latest scientific discoveries and technical progresses in the field of ophthalmology and to internalize the new experimental/surgical technologies, in vitro and in vivo ocular histological analysis, and medical devices necessary to achieve project goals.

This position requires a visionary individual with scientific insight and relevant experience in ophthalmology research and clinical fields and will provide R&D department with thoughts and considerations proven by their own accomplishments to help developing strategies to translate scientific findings into clinically practical application. Also, the director must spearhead beachside basic studies by conducting the experiments, summarizing the data in collaboration with research scientists, developing in vivo systems for retinal transplantation and gene therapy as well as a wide range of duties and tasks related to overseeing the operations of a scientific laboratory such as the maintenance and improvement of the laboratory.

Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Define and execute research strategy for retinal regenerative medicine.

  • Evaluate new treatment methods, injection systems, combination medications, biological/ histological analysis, tissue engineering, quantification method with ophthalmological expertise and employ them into research programs as needed.

  • Develop cell culture and differentiation methods to manufacture retinal sheets applicable to clinical settings more efficiently and effectively.

  • Seek a path forward to establish in vivo transplantation system in rodents, including searching external vivarium, leveraging in-house facilities, complying AALAC policies, developing surgical procedures and medical devices as well as formulating retinal sheets transplantable.

  • Lead and operate specialized biological assays, tests, and studies in molecular biology, stem cell culture, immunohistochemistry, flow cytometry, tissue differentiation, as well as gene therapy and gene editing experiments using AAVs, etc.

  • Design and execute a series of experiments to test hypotheses that could optimize project outcomes.

  • Responsible for data analysis, data storage and study reporting: perform calculations to complete research test results; collate data; perform statistical analysis of experimental results and maintains notes and log or computer database as well as document and summarize completed protocols and results.

  • Conceive/design/plan/coordinate advanced and collaborative studies required for product research and development.

  • Provide scientific insight and clinical expertise to R&D organization in discussions on clinical trial design and transportation of cellular drug products.

  • Assist and support in training new scientists and provide technical and scientific leadership to the team.

  • Ensure compliance with all regulatory requirements, such as safe handling of biohazard materials and toxic chemical substances.

  • Maintain business practices that are in accordance with corporate ethics, compliance, budget guidelines, corporate policies, and standard operating procedures.

  • Oversee lab operations to build research progress constantly, such as monitoring inventory and order supplies, coordinating purchase orders and logistics with key stakeholders: vendors, accounting department, and lab facility owners, writing specifications and justifications for equipment purchases, and cleansing and sanitizing of the laboratory.

  • Maintain highly professional expertise by staying current with scientific and industry literature, technologies, and products.

  • Learn knowledge and expertise with various RACMO business activities and develop relevant skills, including critical thinking, learning agility, business partnering, effective communication, project management, and strategic sourcing to realize optimal results.

  • Other duties as assigned.

Key Core Competencies

  • Expertise in research and clinical practice focused on ocular/retinal biology, development, immunology, and disease models with research and surgical skill sets that can be applied to regenerative medicine.

  • Proficient in conducting preclinical studies, translational research, and clinical research about ocular/retinal treatment.

  • Highly skilled in laboratory techniques such as animal experiments, ophthalmic diagnostic/evaluation, tissue analysis/characterization, immunohistochemistry, and molecular biology.

  • Excellent research planning and execution skills, strong leadership and interpersonal skills, effective communication/influence/response to change, anticipate and respond to change with ease and agility, and seek solutions to enhance quality/value/service/efficiency.

  • Administrative skills in operating the laboratory smoothly by scheduling the experiment and staff, tracking and monitoring equipment, replenishing supplies, and maintaining all security protocols and standards.

  • Ability to study independently, ability to identify problems, ability to solve problems, and ability to complete tasks to the end.

  • Technology Familiarity with common digital platforms such as analyzing, managing, and organizing the data. Strong desire and innate ability to learn.

  • Analytical skills: analytical mindset, able to analyze ongoing operations and develop insights on opportunities. Able to translate insights into action plans.

  • Business Partnering: Demonstrate a collaborative and consultative approach to building meaningful relationships with key business stakeholders.

  • Drive change and innovation: seek solutions that enhance quality, value, service, and effectiveness. Respectfully challenge and support the "way" things are done.

  • Create value for the team: anticipate and respond to business requirements and opportunities. Solve problems and deliver on commitments.

  • Foster camaraderie and unity: work respectfully with team members to create a work environment that promotes productivity, creativity, engagement, communication, and fulfillment.

Education and Experience

  • Ph.D. in stem cell or ophthalmology is required.

  • Minimum 8 years of experience in ocular research with in vivo research, such as drug administration, efficacy assessment, and transplantation in rodent and rabbit disease models.

  • Experience of drug discovery and clinical practice in the field of ophthalmology is appreciated.

  • Embrace work flexibility and willingness to fulfill the responsibilities at the RACMO office & lab in Watertown, MA, for 4-5 days a week.

The base salary range for this role is $163,000.00 to $213,900.00. Base salary is part of our total rewards package which also includes the opportunity for merit-based salary increases, short incentive plan participation, eligibility for our 401(k) plan, medical, dental, vision, life and disability insurances and leaves provided in line with your work state. Our robust time-off policy includes unlimited paid time off, 11 paid holidays plus additional time off for a shut-down period during the last week of December, 80 hours of paid sick time upon hire and each year thereafter. Total compensation, including base salary to be offered, will depend on elements unique to each candidate, including candidate experience, skills, education and other factors permitted by law.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified. All personnel may be required to perform duties outside of their normal responsibilities from time to time, as needed.

Confidential Data:All information (written, verbal, electronic, etc.) that an employee encounters is considered confidential.

Compliance :Achieve and maintain Compliance with all applicable regulatory, legal and operational rules and procedures, by ensuring that all plans and activities for and on behalf of Sumitomo Pharma America (SMPA) and affiliates are carried out with the "best" industry practices and the highest ethical standards.

Mental/Physical Requirements: Fast paced environment handling multiple demands. Must be able to exercise appropriate judgment as necessary. Requires a high level of initiative and independence. Excellent written and oral communication skills required. Requires ability to use a personal computer for extended periods of time.

Sumitomo Pharma America (SMPA) is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and Affirmative Action employer

Sumitomo Pharma America (SMPA) is committed to a culturally diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race; color; creed; religion; national origin; age; ancestry; nationality; marital, domestic partnership or civil union status; sex, gender, gender identity or expression; affectional or sexual orientation; disability; veteran or military status or liability for military status; domestic violence victim status; atypical cellular or blood trait; genetic information (including the refusal to submit to genetic testing) or any other characteristic protected by law.

For more information about EEO and the Law, please visit the following pages:

Equal Employment Opportunity is THE LAW

EEO is the Law Poster Supplement

Pay Transparency

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