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Astellas Pharma Scientist II/Senior Scientist, Oncology Drug Discovery in Cambridge, Massachusetts

Do you want to be part of an inclusive team that works to develop innovative therapies for patients? Every day, we are driven to develop and deliver innovative and effective new medicines to patients and physicians. If you want to be part of this exciting work, you belong at Astellas!

Astellas Pharma Inc. is a pharmaceutical company conducting business in more than 70 countries around the world. We are committed to turning innovative science into medical solutions that bring value and hope to patients and their families. Keeping our focus on addressing unmet medical needs and conducting our business with ethics and integrity enables us to improve the health of people throughout the world. For more information on Astellas, please visit our website at .

Astellas is announcing a Scientist II/Senior Scientist, Oncology Drug Discovery opportunity at their Astellas Immuno-Oncology Division in Cambridge, MA.


As part of Immuno-Oncology Division at Astellas, this RNA Epi-Transcriptomics Team is a newly established global research team. The office / Lab is located in a state-of-the-art facility in the heart of the Cambridge biomedical ecosystem. We are exploring novel oncology drug discovery opportunity in the field of RNA modifications to address unmet medical needs, and overcome resistance to chemo, target therapy and immunotherapy.

We are looking for a creative and energetic scientist to conceptualize new projects. The candidate must be capable of defining technical objectives of new and existing programs and to plan the execution of efforts and perform experiments to meet objectives. She/He will 1) apply expertise and scientific knowledge to ongoing cancer research and toward development of new project proposals; 2) plan and direct laboratory Research and Development activities by assessing underlying technical and conceptual risks and defining approaches and methodologies, in order to achieve goals; 3) Initiate projects that have risks such as development of novel technologies or application of individual expertise to new areas; 4)Take a leadership role contributing across internal cross-functional groups, and through familiarity with scientific literature and participation at conferences.

The successful candidate will have hands-on research experience on oncology drug discovery, and RNA-related technologies. He/she will have the capability of working in a global team with diverse background.

Essential Job Responsibilities:

  • Performs research on small molecule cancer drug discovery focused on RNA modification & homeostasis.

  • Lead wet bench experiments through collaboration with teammates.

  • Prepares technical reports, summaries, protocols, and quantitative analyses. Investigates, creates and develops new methods and technologies for project advancement.

  • Detail-oriented, self-motivated and capable of initiating establishment of new/existing methodologies to support new and ongoing projects

  • Aligns with company's objectives and project timelines to solve complex problems in creative and effective ways

  • Works in collaboration with Astellas R&D, CROs, consultants and academia globally



  • Education & Training:

  • Scientist: PhD level scientist with 5+, MS with 8+, or BS with 12 + years' experience in drug discovery, biotechnology, or academic leadership.

  • Scientist II: PhD level scientist with 3+, MS with 7+, or BS with 10 + years' experience in drug discovery, biotechnology, or academic leadership.

  • Minimum 5 years of wet bench research experience in oncology field in industry and / or academia

  • Good understanding of working in global team with diverse background (able to work closely with colleagues at both US and Japan).

  • Demonstrated industry experience or academic achievement, as evidenced by high quality publications and/or contribution to drug development portfolio

  • Ability to collaborate with external partners across multiple scientific disciplines globally.


  • 1 or more of the qualifications below:

  • Expertise in RNA biology related methodologies; Research experience on RNA modifications and related diseases

  • Previous experience in in vitro and in cellular assay development, biomarker ID and cancer patient stratification.

  • Experience on pre-clinical in vivo oncology models

  • Small molecule drug discovery experience


  • Medical, Dental and Vision Insurance

  • Generous Paid Time Off options, including Vacation and Sick time, plus national holidays including year-end shut down

  • 401(k) match and annual company contribution

  • Company paid life insurance

  • Annual Corporate Bonus and Quarterly Sales Incentive for eligible positions

  • Long Term Incentive Plan for eligible positions

  • Referral bonus program


Category Research and Development

Astellas is committed to equality of opportunity in all aspects of employment. EOE including Disability/Protected Veterans