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Director, Rare Disease Research

Moderna, Inc.
Cambridge, MA
Start date
Mar 16, 2024

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Regulatory, Science/R&D, Research, Pathology
Required Education
Position Type
Full time
Genetown, Best Places to Work

Job Details

The Role:

Moderna is a biotechnology company that is pioneering the use of mRNA as a platform for developing novel therapeutics We are seeking a Director in Rare Disease Research who embodies a fusion of high-level creativity, innovation, and problem-solving capabilities, essential for generating and testing groundbreaking hypotheses and concepts. The ideal candidate will harbor a fervent passion for rare disease research and a steadfast commitment to enhancing the quality of life for patients afflicted with these conditions. Exceptional communication, collaboration, and leadership skills are paramount, as is the ability to navigate and contribute effectively within a cross-functional and vibrant environment. This role offers the unique opportunity to engage in pioneering and meaningful projects with the potential to revolutionize the treatment paradigm for rare diseases. As a member of our team, you will immerse yourself in a supportive and diverse culture that prizes innovation, excellence, and collective effort. With access to cutting-edge facilities and resources, bolstered by a robust network of mentors and peers, your professional growth and development will be a continuous journey. You will confront intricate scientific inquiries and technical challenges, necessitating out-of-the-box thinking and adaptability to evolving needs and priorities. The role demands resilience and agility in a competitive and briskly paced setting, where delivering top-tier results within stringent timelines is the norm. Embracing the uncertainty and risks inherent in rare disease research, you will learn to manage the potential for failure and setbacks, all while pushing the boundaries of medical science.

Heres What Youll Do:

  • Serve as a scientific leader for Rare Disease discovery and collaborate with other leaders

  • Drive discovery efforts to develop mRNA-based therapies for rare diseases.

  • Work to develop, improve, and optimize therapeutic targets for rare diseases.

  • Manage, mentor, and train scientists and research associates.

  • Lead a team of passionate scientists to accomplish departmental goals.

  • Work with the team to select indications, design, plan, and execute in vitro and in vivo experiments to select constructs, establish dose response relationships in animal models and cell culture systems.

  • Collaborate across the research organization to design therapeutic targets, optimize mRNA sequences, and use other available tools to create viable treatments.

  • Communicate results clearly and concisely across the Rare Disease Research department and the organization.

  • Manage, mentor, and train scientists and research associates.

Here's What Youll Bring to the Table:

  • A PhD in molecular biology, biochemistry, biotechnology, or a related field, with at least 10-15 years of postdoctoral academic industry experience in rare disease research.

  • A proven track record of publications and presentations in the field of rare disease biology and therapeutics.

  • A strong expertise in secreted proteins, protein engineering, and other modalities such as gene therapy mediated delivery, with hands-on experience in designing, characterizing recombinant proteins both in vitro and in vivo.

  • A solid understanding of the molecular mechanisms and pathways involved in rare diseases, and the ability to apply this knowledge to identify and validate novel targets and biomarkers.

  • A high level of creativity, innovation, and problem-solving skills, with the ability to generate and test novel hypotheses and concepts.

  • A passion for rare disease research and a commitment to improving the lives of patients with rare diseases.

  • Excellent communication, collaboration, and leadership skills, with the ability to work effectively in a cross-functional and dynamic environment.

Moderna is pleased to provide you and your family with a comprehensive and innovative suite of benefits, including:

  • Highly competitive and inclusive medical, dental and vision coverage options
  • Flexible Spending Accounts for medical expenses and dependent care expenses
  • Lifestyle Spending Account funds to help you engage in personal enrichment and self-care activities
  • Family care benefits, including subsidized back-up care options and on-demand tutoring
  • Free premium access to fitness, nutrition, and mindfulness classes
  • Exclusive preferred pricing on Peloton fitness equipment
  • Adoption and family-planning benefits
  • Dedicated care coordination support for our LGBTQ+ community
  • Generous paid time off, including:
    Vacation, sick time and holidays
    Volunteer time to participate within your community
    Discretionary year-end shutdown
    Paid sabbatical after 5 years; every 3 years thereafter
  • Generous Paid Leave offerings, including 18 weeks of 100% paid parental leave for all new parents
  • 401k match and Financial Planning tools
  • Moderna-paid Life, LTD and STD insurance coverages, as well as voluntary benefit options
  • Complimentary concierge service including home services research, travel booking, and entertainment requests
  • Free parking or subsidized commuter passes
  • Location-specific perks and extras!

About Moderna

Since our founding in 2010, we have aspired to build the leading mRNA technology platform, theinfrastructure to reimagine how medicines are created and delivered, and a world-class team. We believe in giving our people a platform to change medicine and an opportunity to change the world.

By living our mission, values, and mindsets every day, our peopleare the driving force behind our scientific progress and our culture.Together, we are creating a culture of belonging and building an organization that cares deeply for our patients, our employees, the environment, and our communities.

We are proud to have been recognized as a Science Magazine Top Biopharma Employer, a Fast Company Best Workplace for Innovators, and a Great Place to Work in the U.S.

As we build our company, we have always believed an in-person culture is critical to our success. Moderna champions the significant benefits of in-office collaboration by embracing a 70/30 work model. This 70% in-office structure helps to foster a culture rich in innovation, teamwork, and direct mentorship. Join us in shaping a world where every interaction is an opportunity to learn, contribute and make a meaningful impact.

If you want to make a difference and join a team that is changing the future of medicine, we invite you to visit to learn more about our current opportunities.

Moderna is a smoke-free, alcohol-free and drug-free work environment.

Moderna is a place where everyone can grow. If you meet the Basic Qualifications for the role and you would be excited to contribute to our mission every day, please apply!

Moderna is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer.

Moderna is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person's race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, ancestry or citizenship, ethnicity, disability, military or protected veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, marital or familial status, or any other personal characteristic protected under applicable law. Moderna is an E-Verify Employer in the United States. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements.

Belonging, Inclusion, and Diversity are critical to the success of our company and our impact on society. Were focused on attracting, retaining, developing, and advancing our employees and believe that by cultivating diverse experiences, backgrounds, and ideas, we can provide an environment where every employee is able to contribute their best.

Moderna is committed to offering reasonable accommodations to qualified job applicants with disabilities. Any applicant requiring an accommodation in connection with the hiring process and/or to perform the essential functions of the position for which the applicant has applied should contact the Accommodations team at (EEO/AAP Employer)




Moderna is advancing messenger RNA (mRNA) science to create a new class of transformative medicines for patients. Moderna’s platform builds on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery technology and manufacturing, providing the Company the capability to pursue in parallel a robust pipeline of new development candidates. Moderna is developing therapeutics and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases and cardiovascular diseases, independently and with strategic collaborators.

mRNA is now a turning point in the history of science, medicine, technology, even humankind itself. With this breakthrough discovery, many of the world’s biggest and most challenging medical problems are no longer a question of “how?” but merely a question of “when?”

Come with us as we pursue the uncharted reaches of possibility and make your mark on the future of medicine.


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Company info
200 Technology Square
Cambridge, MA

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