Senior Director, SSF GpGx Job

South San Francisco, CA, US
June 16 2017
Life Sciences, Biology
Organization Type
Senior Director, SSF GpGx-BIO004863


Merck is a global health care leader with a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines, vaccines and consumer health products, as well as animal health products. Today, we are building a new kind of healthcare company – one that is ready to help create a healthier future for all of us.

Our ability to excel depends on the integrity, knowledge, imagination, skill, diversity and teamwork of people like you. To this end, we strive to create an environment of mutual respect, encouragement and teamwork. As part of our global team, you’ll have the opportunity to collaborate with talented and dedicated colleagues while developing and expanding your career.

We are currently recruiting a key individual to contribute to Merck’s genetics and genomics effort in our growing South San Francisco site. At Merck Research Labs South San Francisco, you'll have the opportunity to expand your knowledge and skills through collaboration with talented and dedicated colleagues while advancing your career. However, the most important singular quality we are looking for is a drug hunter that seeks to put patients first as the front and central goal of their research. The location will be the preclinical research laboratories at our new state of the art facility in the South San Francisco Bay Area where you will be able to participate in a vibrant culture connecting leading academic and biotech research centers. Beyond local connections, you will also be able to supplement your research activities by taking advantage of the technologies and capabilities of the wider Merck network of sites in Boston, MA as well as NJ and PA.

This Senior Director will perform both a critical strategic role, as well as hands-on role, in igniting, linking, integrating, seeding, and overseeing the scientific direction of the intersection of genetics and genomics and the early drug development programs initially involving the SSF site for target identification and validation. This individual will also play a vital role in helping to develop the site, as well as integrating key genetics and genomics components into the site activities including interactions with discovery genetics, quantitative trait sciences, genome sciences and chemical biology, and translational genetics.

This South San Francisco-based position will report into the VP of Genetics and Pharmacogenomics. The qualified individual will be a recognized expert in the field of human genetics and biology with expertise and experience in drug development, small molecule or biologics and will have a strong understanding of discovery genetics using various approaches, functional interrogation of genetic findings, systems biology, chemical biology, and drug development. In addition to providing strategic and operational leadership, the incumbent will work closely with teams in discovery genetics and functional biology across all major therapeutic areas. He/she will be expected to operate in a highly collaborative environment, partnering with peers on site (all therapeutic areas, pharmacology, chemistry, experimental medicine) and at other locations in Boston, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and emerging markets. This position will also require extensive interactions with external partners, including leaders in academia as well as other Pharma/biotech companies.

Specific responsibilities include:

Participating as part of VP of human genetics-led leadership team in developing, and driving, the strategy to identify and prioritize programs entering the early pipeline across all therapeutic areas.

Work alongside a team of discovery geneticists and wet-lab scientists responsible for applying the tools of human genetics and functional genomics to target identification and validation rooted in the area of metabolism, immunology, inflammation, oncology, and neurosciences

Develop new external collaborations with academia and industry partners to leverage tools to exploit human genetics in order to discover new drug targets.

Engage with internal peers in diverse areas – informatics, pharmacology, biologics, chemistry, chemical biology, therapeutic area biology, experimental medicine – to identify opportunities for drug development based on human genetic discoveries.

Integrate diverse ‘omics / biological datasets with human genetic data to identify novel pathways for drug development across all therapeutic areas.

Provide genetics expertise to SSF site.

Collaborate across functional areas and in a matrixed environment to develop integrated research plans, optimize resource allocation, and maximize efficiencies to best execute on programs.

Working closely with genetic discovery, functional biology, and clinical teams to design genetic studies, including writing and defending project approval documents

Written and verbal communication of study results to project team and the scientific community, including proposals for further experiments and publications in leading journals;

In collaboration with strategic operations, manage a portfolio of projects to review and prioritize new and on-going projects


Education Requirement:

- MD or PhD


- Demonstrated experience with a minimum of 10 years of experience in human metabolism expertise (peer reviewed publication, history of achievement, patents, etc.) with an appreciation of the role of human genetics for target identification and validation or functional genomics.

- Background in human genetics and biology with expertise and experience in drug development, small molecule or biologics.

- Demonstrated leadership skills. Proven ability to create and work within high performance teams and/or matrix organization, strong influencing skills.

- Demonstrated ability to conduct research individually and collaboratively and prioritize work against departmental and company goals.

- Excellent oral and written communication skills, ability to establish and maintain productive cross-site and high caliber external collaborations.

- Proficiency to critically evaluate scientific and therapeutic proposals and adopt novel technologies to facilitate groundbreaking research.

- Proven track record in change management including ability to eliminate obstacles/barriers in order to implement change.

- Ability to create partnerships with key stakeholders.

Merck is an equal opportunity employer, Minority/Female/Disability/Veteran – proudly embracing diversity in all of its manifestations.

Job: Biology-Discovery

Job Title:Senior Director, SSF GpGx

Primary Location: NA-US-CA-South San Francisco

Employee Status: Regular

Number of Openings: 1

Company Trade Name:Merck

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