Senior Scientist in molecular biology and gene therapy

Braine-l'Alleud, Walloon Region, be
Company: UCB
Category: Computer and Mathematical Occupations
Published on 2021-06-17 14:04:34

Make your mark for patients.

We’re here because we want to build the future and transform patients’ lives for the better.

At UCB, our people are our experiences and achievements, our passion and drive. That’s why we’re looking for talented individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences - not just the best and brightest, but those who care about making a meaningful difference in the lives of patients. We promote an environment of diversity, openness, and respect where people can make valuable contributions.

An exciting journey lies ahead. Will you join us in pushing the boundaries of what’s possible?


UCB aspires to be the patient-centric global biopharmaceutical leader transforming the lives of people living with severe diseases. We focus on central nervous system and immunology disorders. Our promise is to help tackle the serious unmet medical needs affecting patients around the world. We now have an exciting opportunity in Early Solutions (our research organization) at our site in Braine L’Alleud Belgium, for a senior scientist with expertise in molecular biology, cell biology and gene therapy to strengthen our in vitro pharmacology department . As part of our continuous evolution we are building a cross-disciplinary team working on novel gene therapeutics for neurological diseases. This is an exciting role for talented and experienced PhD to work within the Neuroscience therapeutic area and engage in breakthrough research in a vibrant drug discovery environment – inspired by patients, driven by science.

Senior Scientist in molecular biology and gene therapy
We are currently hiring a talented molecular biologist to join the Neuroscience Discovery Biology group. The remits of the group include but are not limited to support our pre-clinical CNS small molecule, antibody and gene therapy projects. To further strengthen our capabilities in gene therapy and molecular biology, we are seeking a skilled, lab-based scientist with experience in molecular biology. The candidate will be part of an interdisciplinary team implementing and running novel CNS gene therapy projects.
He/she will have experience in design, production and quality control assays of viral vectors (AAV and lentiviral) that will be used for in vitro and in vivo assays. She/He will be providing high quality data and scientific support, keeping up-to-date with relevant scientific literature and pro-actively searching for new methodologies. In order to achieve these goals, the group has access to state-of-the-art equipment and technologies either internally or through international collaborations. 
The candidate will be partly lab-based and is expected to have experience in one or more of following techniques: iPSC culture and differentiation to neural cells, 3D cultures, molecular biology (plasmid design, qPCR, ddPCR) and transcriptomics techniques. Experience with automation platforms for compound or viral vector handling and cell culture is a plus.
The candidate must be highly motivated and possess the ability to work productively in a fast-paced environment that requires a high level of communication, organization, and collaboration as well as demonstrate enthusiasm and willingness to learn novel techniques and methodologies.

Education & Experience 
The ideal candidate will have acquired his/her PhD degree in the field of molecular biology or gene therapy. She/He will be skilled in viral vector design and transduction assays for in vitro and in vivo characterization of viral vector constructs and measurement of biological effects. Knowledge in translating preclinical to clinical gene therapy projects for CNS disorders will be considered as additional asset. 

Technical Skills & Soft skills

  • We are looking for candidates who can show one or more of following skills:
  • Proven expertise in differentiation protocols to generate neural cell types from iPSC in 2D and 3D cultures
  • Proven expertise to develop 3D cell assays 
  • Proven experience with viral vector transductions of cell lines, primary neural cells or iPSC derived neural cells using AAV and Lentiviral vectors for potency assays and functional assays
  • Proven experience in developing cell-based assays as flow cytometry, ELISA, MSD, cellular target engagement, CETSA or immunofluorescent assays
  • Proven experience in molecular biology techniques as plasmid design, qPCR, RNAseq, CRISPR guide design or single cell transcriptomics
  • Proven experience with bespoke imaging assays as high-content, confocal microscopy
  • Proven experience with using liquid handling devices and knowledge on writing application protocols to support screening assays
  • Importantly, the candidate will demonstrate:

  • Ability to accurately analyse and interpret experimental data, perform statistical analysis, formulate conclusions and communicate data with colleagues
  • Ability to multitask, 
  • Strong interpersonal skills, 
  • Fluency in English (both written and oral) as this is the working language.

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