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Principal Research Scientist I-Biological Research

Irvine, California
Start date
Feb 12, 2024

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Job Details

The Toxin Innovation Pharmacology Group at AbbVie is seeking a Principal Scientist who is highly motivated and innovative, and possesses strong leadership and communication skills to lead a neuromuscular junction in vivo research team. Ideally, the candidate has expertise in the chemical transmission from a motor nerve to skeletal muscle. An understanding of botulinum toxin biology is desired but not required. 

The successful candidate will lead a pharmacology team and contribute expertise to discovery research activities aimed at generating novel botulinum neurotoxins and biotherapeutics. He/She/They will be responsible for leading the screening and characterization of biotherapeutics and developing methods and new capabilities for in vivo pharmacology studies related to controlling neuromuscular impulse transmission and muscle movement.

The ideal candidate has experience working in early-stage discovery research and possesses a strong understanding of project conception, strategic planning, budgeting, and leading in a matrixed organization. A proven track record of leading and developing high-performing teams is highly desired. The candidate should be able to lead by influence and maintain a productive, collaborative, and inclusive laboratory environment in compliance with regulatory and company expectations. Strong communication skills are essential as the candidate must be able to tailor interactions with technical teams and represent the program and strategy to executive-level management.

Key Responsibilities:

•       Drives pharmacological screening & characterization of discovery stage protein candidates with the goal of designing/selecting new or improved products.

•       Develops and achieves disciplined strategy in alignment with functional goals and key scientific objectives.

•       Direct project activities and professional development of a group of scientists by effectively mentoring, guiding, and supervising scientific personnel.

•       Advances scientific expertise within function and actively collaborates with multi-disciplinary experts to advance programs from research to development.

•       Ensures quality and effectiveness of key results of major project plans within function through sound design, early risk assessments, and implementation of fallback strategies.

•       Proactively advise and share knowledge and expert opinions with direct reports, peers, and senior management. Mentor and train functional colleagues and assess current and emerging business challenges enabling functional goal achievement.

•       Source and identify emerging scientific trends from internal and external sources and assess relevance. Integrates trends into functional short-term objectives.

•       Manage key documentation and inventory in compliance with Federal Regulations.

•       Present program updates and research strategies to functional scientific and non-scientific leaders as well as potential and existing partners.

•       Interact well with diverse groups within functions (research areas, commercial, development, among others) and maintain strong working relationships with internal and external collaborators.

•       Evaluate internal and external research and development programs.

Job Qualifications (minimum requirements):

•       Proven ability to innovate with a history of advancing discovery research projects.

•       Strong team leadership and motivational skills with demonstrated ability to manage direct reports and work productively in a matrix team environment.

•       Experience developing, performing, and troubleshooting a wide variety of in vivo pharmacological characterization methods.

•       Desire to communicate and effectively integrate protein characterization data with cellular and in vivo biological data to productively advance biopharmaceutical discovery research projects.

•       Experience with pharmaceutical development processes (including, but not limited to lead characterization, target engagement, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics).

•       Excellent oral and written communication skills required as is experience with documentation of experimental plans, budget, timelines, and generating high quality technical reports.

•       Experience with initiative-taking and critical evaluation of internal and external research and development programs.

Education & Experience:

·       PhD in a biological science discipline (Neuroscience, Neuroimmunology, Immunology, Molecular Biology, Biophysical characterization, or related) with typically 6+ years of relevant post-graduate experience

·       MS or equivalent education with relevant 12+ years of related work will also be considered

·       Industry experience in a discovery research environment is highly desired

AbbVie is committed to operating with integrity, driving innovation, transforming lives, serving our community, and embracing diversity and inclusion. It is AbbVie’s policy to employ qualified persons of the greatest ability without discrimination against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex (including pregnancy), physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, status as a protected veteran, or any other legally protected group status.


AbbVie’s mission is to discover and deliver innovative medicines that solve serious health issues today and address the medical challenges of tomorrow. We strive to have a remarkable impact on people’s lives across several key therapeutic areas: immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women’s health and gastroenterology, in addition to products and services across its Allergan Aesthetics portfolio. For more information about AbbVie, please visit us at Follow @abbvie on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

Stock Symbol: ABBV

Stock Exchange: NYSE

Company info
1 North Waukegan Road
North Chicago

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