Sr. Research Scientist I (Associate Director), Process Development

Foster City
See job description.
July 31 2021
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type
Job Type
Senior Scientist

Sr. Research Scientist I (Associate Director), Process Development
United States - New Jersey - Morris Plains

Gilead Sciences, Inc. is a research-based bio-pharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and commercializes innovative medicines in areas of unmet medical need. With each new discovery and investigational drug candidate, we seek to improve the care of patients living with life-threatening diseases around the world. Gileads therapeutic areas of focus include HIV/AIDS, liver diseases, cancer and inflammation, and serious respiratory and cardiovascular conditions.

Making an impact on a global scale
Inclusion is one of the companys five core values. Thats because we know that we are stronger and more innovative at Gilead when we are informed by a diverse set of backgrounds, experiences and points of view. Gilead Sciences is a biopharmaceutical company that discovers, develops and commercializes innovative therapeutics in areas of unmet medical need. The company's mission is to advance the care of patients suffering from life-threatening diseases worldwide.

When you join Gilead, you join our mission to change the world by enabling people to live healthier and more fulfilling lives. Come join a mission-driven bio-pharmaceutical organization that values inclusion and diversity, has a strong portfolio of products, and is constantly #CreatingPossible

Sr. Research Scientist I (Associate Director), Process Development - Morris Plains, NJ

Gilead Sciences has an opportunity for an experienced candidate in the Upstream Process Development & Molecular Biology within the Pharma & Biologics Ops Admin department located in Morris Plains, New Jersey. The team operates with the mission to develop manufacturing processes for our company\'s ADC/biologics portfolio, including cell line and upstream process development of monoclonal antibody (mAb) products.

This position is for a Sr. Scientist role and requires strong management and leadership skills. Reporting to the Sr. Director of Upstream Process Development, the individual will manage a small group of scientists responsible for the rapid development and implementation of innovative, robust, scalable, and cost-efficient/effective CHO cell culture manufacturing processes in support of early and late stage clinical development of protein molecules. An ideal candidate will demonstrate in-depth scientific understanding of mammalian cell biology, cell culture media, bioreactor engineering principles, product quality attribute science, along with broad, experience-based skill sets in technology transfer, scale-up, and regulatory strategies.

Job Responsibilities
  • Lead CMC development work of pipeline programs for Phase I clinical and up to commercial processes. Direct large molecule candidate selection and advance upstream First-In-Human (FIH) platform, and encompass the aspects of process development, optimization, characterization, validation, tech transfer to manufacturing, and regulatory filings.
  • Lead efforts on the development and implementation of new technologies and business strategies to improve process capabilities and drive operational efficiency. Drive cell culture and bioreactor development and champion creative process improvement initiatives. Participate in laboratory bench work as needed.
  • Oversee project plans, including raw materials and equipment availability, in preparation of laboratory and/or pilot-scale runs from the team. Design and execute studies and interpret experimental results. Make strategic recommendations to the team/management on project related issues (e.g., study design, progress, priorities, resourcing, future strategies).
  • Write and review SOP, technical summary, and development reports for efficient knowledge management. Participate in authoring CMC regulatory filing sections.
  • Keep current in relevant literatures/patents and related new technologies with a track record of successful applications of said technologies that comply to current and emerging regulatory requirements (e.g., FDA, EMA, ICH). Foster a culture of innovation and an environment of technical mastery at all levels. Pursue fundamental, scientific, and mechanistic understanding as needed, including collaborating with academia, CMO/CDMO, vendors, or regulatory agencies.
  • Author patents, peer-reviewed publications, and presentations for scientific and technological developments, as well as being expected to exert influence internally and externally.
  • Manage a team of scientists/engineers with different levels of expertise. Serve as a technical lead by providing technical oversight to the team and training to junior scientists.
  • Build a high performing team. Set SMART goals and directions to the team. Be able to effectively mentor, engage, and develop direct reports. Inspire trust, respect, and collaboration, with prior experience as a people manger.
  • Ensure that safe laboratory practices are followed.
  • Carries out direct supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the departmental set goals.
  • Responsibilities include interviewing potential employees, employee training and development, planning, assigning, and directing work, appraising performance, rewarding and disciplining, corrective action and complaint resolution.

Required Education, Experience & Skills
  • PhD in Chemical Engineering, Biochemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Biotechnology, Cell Biology, Biochemistry, or related scientific fields/disciplines with 2+ years, or MS with 8+ years, or BS with 10+ years of relevant experience in the biotech or biopharmaceutical industry.
  • Extensive prior experience in the process development and clinical or commercial cGMP production of antibody or antibody-related products
  • Extensive experience with (pre-)pivotal phase process development. Expertise in scale-down model qualification, risk assessment (FMEAs), process characterization and validation (PCPV), tech transfer and process scale-up, and/or regulatory filings.
  • Extensive expertise in cell culture, fed-batch process, and/or perfusion (e.g., ATF) technology development in controlled bioreactors with a variety of systems including bench-scale reactors and high throughput technologies (e.g., ambr).
  • Good understanding of Chinese Hamster Ovaries (CHO) cell biology, metabolic pathways, cell culture media, and engineering principles (mass transfer, mixing, shear, etc.) for bioreactor scale-up.
  • Working knowledge of design of experiments (DOE), in-depth understanding of statistical analysis, and interpretation of cell culture data using statistical software (e.g., JMP, Design Expert, MiniTab) or statistical toolboxes of Matlab, etc.
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills. Proven track record of accomplishments (scientific publications and/or presentations) in upstream process, media development, or technology development areas.
  • Strategic and innovative thinker with track record of fresh insightful thinking by developing creative approaches to processes/practices and implementation of new technologies
  • Self-motivated individual with a "can do" attitude coupled with a willingness to do what it takes to achieve team goals and overcome whatever project obstacles occur. Superior problem-solving skills in anticipating issues, identifying root causes of critical process deviations, and recommending effective/ efficient technical solutions to the team.
  • Strong organizational skills to manage projects (or work) in a matrix environment. Comfortable working with minimal directions/guidance. Abilities to work strategically in a detail-oriented framework, react productively to changes in priorities, and handle other essential tasks well as assigned.

Preferred Qualifications:
  • PhD in Chemical Engineering, Biochemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Biotechnology, Cell Biology, Biochemistry, or related scientific fields/disciplines with 6+ years, or MS with 10+ years, or BS with 12+ years of relevant experience in the biotech or biopharmaceutical industry.
  • Experience in all aspects of late-stage process development activities, along with control strategy, is highly preferred.
  • Strong understanding of processes, equipment, and facilities involved and extensive hands-on experience with bench-top bioreactors (e.g., applikon vessels coupled with finesse controllers) is preferred.
  • Hands on experience with high-throughput microreactor systems (e.g., ambr250 or Dasgip) is desirable.
  • Experience with perfusion (e.g., ATF) cell culture or continuous manufacturing is preferred.
  • Working knowledge of advanced in situ analytics for process monitoring and control (e.g., Raman spectroscopy) is desirable.
  • Experience with the operation and troubleshooting of single-use bioreactor (SUB) systems and scale-up (e.g., 50L, 200L) is beneficial.
  • Experience in application of Quality by Design (QbD) principles as appropriate for late stage programs and jointly development of suitable control strategy for commercial process are advantageous.
  • Understanding of the evolving regulatory requirements and experience in authoring IND/BLA sections and interaction with regulatory agencies is highly desirable.

To apply, please submit resume through our website at

Gilead is an equal opportunity employer.

For jobs in the United States:

As an equal opportunity employer, Gilead Sciences Inc. is committed to a diverse workforce. Employment decisions regarding recruitment and selection will be made without discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, genetic information or characteristic, gender identity and expression, veteran status, or other non-job related characteristics or other prohibited grounds specified in applicable federal, state and local laws. In order to ensure reasonable accommodation for individuals protected by Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Vietnam Era Veterans\' Readjustment Act of 1974, and Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, applicants who require accommodation in the job application process may contact for assistance.

For more information about equal employment opportunity protections, please view the EEO is the Law' poster.



Our environment respects individual differences and recognizes each employee as an integral member of our company. Our workforce reflects these values and celebrates the individuals who make up our growing team.

Gilead provides a work environment free of harassment and prohibited conduct. We promote and support individual differences and diversity of thoughts and opinion.

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