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Executive Director, Head of Oligonucleotides

Location San Rafael, California
BioMarin is the world leader in delivering therapeutics that provide meaningful advances to patients who live with serious and life-threatening rare genetic diseases. We target diseases that lack effective therapies and affect relatively small numbers of patients, many of whom are children. These conditions are often inherited, difficult to diagnose, progressively debilitating and have few, if any, treatment options. BioMarin will continue to focus on advancing therapies that are the first or best of their kind.

BioMarin’s Research & Development group is responsible for everything from research and discovery to post-market clinical development. Research & Development involves all bench and clinical research and the associated groups that support those endeavors. Our teams work on developing first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics that provide meaningful advances to patients who live with rare diseases. Come join our team and make a meaningful impact on patients’ lives.

BioMarin is currently recruiting for Head of Oligonucleotides. As the Head of Oligonucleotides, you will be a part of a group that invents, discovers and initiated the development of medicines for the treatment of serious genetic conditions with high unmet medical need.

Job Responsibilities include:

  •  Collaboratively work with colleagues with bioinformatics and genetics expertise to identify target sequences for modulating the expression of high value targets. 
  • Combine expertise in the biology of RNA structure, function and metabolism with working knowledge of commonly deployed oligonucleotide chemistries to design sequence identification strategies and screening cascades for hit to lead discovery.
  • Oversee internal and/or externalized efforts to optimize hit compound sequence/chemistry to minimize toxicity signals, increase potency and improve bio distribution. 
  • Collaborate with colleagues in Biology research to evaluate the function of lead molecules in animal and cellular models of disease.
  • Collaboratively work with colleagues in chemistry, early development and formulation to support early development of lead compounds including early pharmacology and bio distribution studies.
  •  Develop and maintain cell culture assays for screening oligonucleotide and RNA therapeutics for various disease indications and to establish molecular basis of mechanisms of diseases.
  • Build and lead a team of scientists and research associates to support this oligonucleotide discoveries in a large group focused on genetic medicines.
  • Display highly collaborative personality.
  • Contribute to high impact research publications/patent applications and regulatory filings

Skills and Requirements:

  • PhD in Biology/Biochemistry or a relevant subject area with 6+ years of relevant postdoctoral/industrial experience within the area of oligonucleotide biology with 12+ years of overall industry experience.
  • Thorough knowledge of working with DNA and RNA oligonucleotides, antisense and siRNA screening.
  • Pertinent experience of handling, growing and maintaining cell lines and developing cell culture assays.
  • Experience in gene expression analysis using RT-PCR and other related techniques, and protein expression analysis by ELISA, FACS, Western blots.
  • Experience working with primary cells from animals and humans.
  • Hands on experience running in vivo studies and directly dealing with CROs. Experience in designing and writing in vivo study protocols, engaging CROs, data analysis, including statistical analysis, and interpretation.
  • Experience working with innate immune receptor modulators in vitro and in vivo.
  • Thorough knowledge and demonstrated experience of using cutting edge molecular biological and immunological experimental techniques.
  • Experience working as a team member on projects and willing to collaborate with internal project teams developing various nucleic acid therapeutics.
  • Proven track record in identification and early development of oligonucleotide therapeutics.
  • Effective presentation skills of methodologies and results internally to colleagues, including bench scientists, project team leaders, research management, and at scientific conferences.
  • Ability to independently translate strategy into action in a timely manner.
  • Demonstrated experience successfully prioritizing and managing projects and timelines.
  • Strong problem-solving and troubleshooting skills.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills and team work ethics
  • Proven management experience
  • Strong and verifiable track record of collaboration.
  • Absent a Medical or Religious reason that prohibits vaccinations, all our incoming employees must be vaccinated

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

About our location

San Rafael


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We treat rare diseases, and that gives us rare opportunities. Chris Brodeur, Director, Corporate Compliance
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