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Principal Scientist, Synthetic Biology, Biologics & RNA

La Jolla, California
Closing date
Oct 9, 2022

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Life Sciences, Biology, Physical Sciences, Chemistry
Position Type
Full Time
Job Type
Staff 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.

What You Will Achieve

Pfizer's Biotherapeutic Discovery group in La Jolla is seeking an outstanding, creative, and driven Principal Scientist to join our efforts in using synthetic biology to generate therapeutics. The candidate will be responsible for working closely with individuals in both biotherapeutic discovery and biology groups to innovate and develop mRNA and protein therapeutics. The candidate will have access to state-of-the-art engineering technologies and will be expected to continue our tradition of developing world class methods and technologies that enhance our therapeutic discovery and optimization efforts. Additional responsibilities are to contribute to group-wide deliverables, mentor junior scientists within the group, work on several projects simultaneously, and present results and updates at group meetings.

How You Will Achieve It

  • Deliver innovative mRNA and protein therapeutics by combining your knowledge of the underlying biology and mechanism of action with synthetic biology and engineering expertise
  • Design and generate mRNA and protein therapeutics of various modalities
  • Develop and conduct biochemical and cellular assays to evaluate candidate molecules
  • Propose experimental designs and work closely with cross-functional teams, project leads and senior group members on identifying/advancing best strategies and planning/ executing deliverables
  • Work in multidisciplinary and cross-functional teams to develop next generation therapeutics and influence project teams in their decision making and advance biologics through different stages of the development
  • Present results at internal meetings
  • Effectively manage multiple projects to ensure timely delivery


  • Ph.D. in Biological Sciences (Cell Biology, Chemical Biology, Protein Biochemistry, or Biophysics) or a related field (Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering and Biological Engineering) is required with at least 3+ years of industry experience
  • Significant experience with regulation and engineering of mammalian expression systems
  • Experience in cell culture, cell line maintenance, and various reporter assays (including flow cytometry).
  • Proven track record as an innovator in synthetic biology utilizing creative and proactive approach to problem solving, and strong analytical skills.
  • Strong track record of scientific accomplishments demonstrated through publications in highly regarded journals and/or intellectual property generation.
  • Strong motivation, passion and commitment to science and engineering of novel entities.
  • A highly collaborative scientist with broad interests and a diverse background with an ability to work across disciplines and to understand the specific needs of collaborators.
  • Strategic thinking with an ability to understand program and therapeutic area needs and ability to translate that understanding into an actionable approach.
  • Outstanding interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills.
  • Strong time management skills and ability to manage multiple projects in parallel.

  • Previous experience with mRNA therapeutics.
  • Previous experience with protein engineering.
  • Previous experience with cell therapies.
  • Previous experience with high throughput screening methods.

Other Job Details:
  • Eligible for Relocation Package
  • Eligible for Employee Referral Bonus



Relocation assistance may be available based on business needs and/or eligibility.


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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