× Medicines Discovery Catapult

MDC is aiming to develop and validate a broad range of human cell models (healthy and disease), which it will make available to the UK life science community. We are also establishing organ-on-a-chip technologies to allow communication between multiple organs. Some of these models will be fully developed in house whereas others will be transferred from collaborators, potentially needing further development to meet industry needs.

The role of Senior Scientist – Translational Cell Models would suit a highly motivated self-starter who is passionate about better translation of preclinical cell culture models to the clinic, and improved patient outcomes. The successful candidate is likely to demonstrate technical excellence in stem cell biology, experience in organ-on-a-chip applications, or a deep knowledge in a relevant disease area, such as neuroinflammation or fibrotic disease.

The successful individual will bring experience of developing advanced cell culture models and the ability to validate these for commercial applications, which will complement the existing multidisciplinary team. They will focus on working within strategic collaborations to develop in vitro models from a basic research environment towards commercial models/assays suitable for drug discovery programmes. In addition to working closely with external partners, the successful candidate will work with in-house experts to use our high-end technologies to develop sophisticated assays for measuring relevant experimental endpoints in these models.

To ensure adoption of these models, the successful applicant will need to demonstrate that these models are superior to existing models e.g. by more closely replicating disease pathology, showing similar molecular expression to human tissues and the ability to measure appropriate functional outcomes. They will utilise these models in collaborative projects to validate drug targets and to advance technologies for the analysis of complex cell biology including imaging and molecular profiling. The opportunity to join a world class laboratory team in this high profile national organisation should provide a fantastic platform for career development.

Main duties and responsibilities

  • Work with academic institutes and SMEs to develop their cell culture protocols and 3D models for use in drug discovery programmes
  • Provide technical input to ensure that these models are robust and replicate human disease
  • Validate and scale these approaches to facilitate industry uptake of new models
  • Identify novel technologies or scientific developments that will advance the ability to develop 3D models of disease
  • Deliver high quality data in a complex and time pressured collaborative research team environment
  • Implementation of effective lab processes, experimental records, and safety
  • Effective communication and research collaboration skills, working with a wide range of colleagues in range of academic and commercial organisations

Qualifications and Experience

  • The successful candidates will possess a PhD in a biological discipline and have significant relevant experience in mammalian cell culture
  • Extensive experience in developing cell culture protocols and validating end points for use in drug discovery programmes
  • Extensive experience in both primary cell culture and iPSC derived cells
  • Depth of knowledge of one or more disease areas, with a preference for neuroinflammation, renal biology or fibrotic diseases
  • Broad knowledge of innovative technologies being applied to advance complex cell models
  • Ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously in a highly collaborative and inter-disciplinary environment
  • Knowledge of organ-on-a chip and microfluidics technologies would be an advantage