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Senior Scientist, Rare Disease

Cambridge, Massachusetts
Closing date
Jul 8, 2022

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Physical Sciences, Chemistry
Position Type
Full Time
Job Type
Senior Scientist
Organization Type
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Why Patients Need You

Pfizer's purpose is to deliver breakthroughs that change patients' lives. Research and Development is at the heart of fulfilling Pfizer's purpose as we work to translate advanced science and technologies into the therapies and vaccines that matter most. Whether you are in the discovery sciences, ensuring drug safety and efficacy or supporting clinical trials, you will apply cutting edge design and process development capabilities to accelerate and bring the best in class medicines to patients around the world.


Pfizer's Rare Disease Research Unit (RDRU) is committed to developing transformative, first-in-class therapies for rare inherited diseases. We seek a laboratory-based Senior Scientist to become a member of a team working on diseases with high unmet need in the areas of neurodegeneration, metabolism, and cardiomyopathy; employing small molecule, gene therapy, gene editing, and non-viral delivery of nucleic acid approaches. The role will primarily focus on the prosecution of therapeutic programs in repeat expansion disorders such as Huntington's disease, myotonic dystrophy, and C9ORF72 ALS. The position will require partnering with cross function teams in a highly collaborative environment to interrogate molecular mechanisms and aid in developing promising therapeutics for these devastating diseases.

The successful candidate will have a proven track record of project execution in a team environment, delivery of high-quality actionable data, and ability to mentor junior scientists. They are also expected to have excellent problem solving, critical thinking, and presentation skills.

  • Design, execute, analyze and interpret experiments with a high degree of reliability and independence to advance development of rare disease therapies. Assist in mentoring junior colleagues.
  • Communicate findings using both verbal presentations and written reports
  • Keep up to date with new technologies scientific developments to proactively identify testable hypotheses, inform development of novel assays and identify innovative therapeutic opportunities
  • Partner with other Pfizer Research and Development teams, including other discovery lines in Rare Disease, Medicinal Design, and BioMolecular Design to further program goals


  • Ph.D. in the life sciences with 0-3 years of postdoctoral experience, MS with 7+ years, or BS with 9+ experience
  • Expertise in nucleic acid metabolism, including implementing and performing biochemical and cellular assays monitoring DNA damage and repair.
  • Expertise in basic molecular biology techniques including but not limited to cell culture, siRNA and plasmid transfections, immunoassays such as ELISAs and western blotting, and quantitative real-time PCR
  • Ability to establish robust methods in-house, and transfer to internal/external partners.
  • Scientific and technical agility; demonstrated ability to contribute broadly, for example, across multiple disease areas and therapeutic modalities (small molecule, protein, gene therapy, and/or gene editing).
  • Experience supporting a multidisciplinary project team including generating high quality data in a time-sensitive environment, assimilating new information from multiple sources, and effectively communicating with internal and external scientists.
  • Creativity, self-motivation and the ability to work independently including analysis and troubleshooting of experimental results and reviewing literature to formulate new approaches.

  • 2+ years drug discovery experience in an industry setting
  • Hands-on experience with biochemical and cellular assays monitoring DNA mismatch and base excision repair, chromosome instability, and/or chromatin structure including generating substrates, reagents, and cell lines.
  • Experience with NGS methodologies including CLIP, ChIP, single cell sequencing, etc.
  • Experience working with pre-clinical animal models
  • Experience in repeat expansion diseases, especially Huntington's disease


Eligible for Relocation Package

Eligible for Employee Referral Bonus


Pfizer requires all U.S. new hires to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to the first date of employment. As required by applicable law, Pfizer will consider requests for Reasonable Accommodations.

Sunshine Act

Pfizer reports payments and other transfers of value to health care providers as required by federal and state transparency laws and implementing regulations. These laws and regulations require Pfizer to provide government agencies with information such as a health care provider's name, address and the type of payments or other value received, generally for public disclosure. Subject to further legal review and statutory or regulatory clarification, which Pfizer intends to pursue, reimbursement of recruiting expenses for licensed physicians may constitute a reportable transfer of value under the federal transparency law commonly known as the Sunshine Act. Therefore, if you are a licensed physician who incurs recruiting expenses as a result of interviewing with Pfizer that we pay or reimburse, your name, address and the amount of payments made currently will be reported to the government. If you have questions regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to contact your Talent Acquisition representative.

EEO & Employment Eligibility

Pfizer is committed to equal opportunity in the terms and conditions of employment for all employees and job applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, disability or veteran status. Pfizer also complies with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and IRCA. Pfizer is an E-Verify employer.

Research and Development
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