Senior Scientist – Biopharm Cell Line Development
The Biopharm Cell Line Development (CLD) group is seeking to expand its team of enthusiastic and passionate scientists, dedicated to driving the progression of GSK’s Biopharm portfolio by the delivery of high-quality, commercialisable cell lines expressing Biopharmaceutical molecules.
Cell Line Development sits within the wider Biopharm Process Research (BPR) group whose key remit is to deliver a manufacturing-ready cell line and a production process to support clinical progression of all assets in the Biopharm portfolio. CLD “book-ends” the activities of BPR, by liaising directly with the Biopharm Molecular Discovery (BPMD) department to transition lead molecules from research into development. By the application of techniques varying from traditional molecular biology and cell culture through to bespoke automation programming, cellular analysis and data visualisation; CLD scientists facilitate the development of thousands of cell lines per year in support of multiple projects running concurrently. CLD scientists work hand-in-hand with their process development and analytical colleagues in triaging final cell lines to meet strict quality criteria. Regulatory facing documentation is required to support transfer of the final cell banks to GSK’s GMP facility. To enable this, all CLD scientists are accountable for demonstrating scientific rigour in all aspects of their work and experimental recording.
The Cell Line Development group is currently working with teams across GSK, the BPR Disruptive Technologies group, to deliver next-generation CLD capabilities. GSK has made significant investments into cutting-edge micro-fluidic, imaging and analytical technologies to enable this step-change in the development of manufacturing cell lines. The successful applicant will play a pivotal role in transitioning these state-of-the-art technologies from their current research evaluation stages, to fully embed them into our next-generation CLD workflows. This will require innovative thinking, excellent time management and planning, and a thorough understanding of the risks/benefits of making such changes.
The Senior Scientist role will report to the Head of Cell Line Development and be an integral member of the team working towards both portfolio delivery and next-generation CLD objectives. This is a fast-paced, lab based position and we are looking for an autonomous individual with a strong background in cell biology and experience in mammalian cell culture, with the aptitude to independently design and deliver work packages to advance the CLD platform. Our hope would be that the successful applicant could hit the ground running and make an immediate positive impact within the team. The ability to work collaboratively within a team – in addition to delivering on individual objectives, is fundamental to this role. Therefore, the successful applicant must demonstrate strong interpersonal and communication skills.
The role will include the application and optimisation of all aspects of cell line development; from vector engineering, transfection optimisation, routine maintenance/analysis/passaging of suspension CHO cells, single cell cloning and imaging, cellular phenotype fingerprinting, clone selection through to cryopreservation of project critical cell banks. There are numerous opportunities for personal development and training, particularly due to the cross-functional interactions that will be a key to success in this role and the applicants must be able to show a willingness to learn and develop themselves.
Role and Responsibilities
The successful applicant will responsible for:
- Supporting CLD project campaigns in the laboratory and communicating updates to key stakeholders as required.
- Playing an active role in maintaining a high-performance lab environment, by managing their own time effectively, contributing to the daily upkeep of business-critical equipment and by supporting other team members to achieve shared objectives.
- Supporting next-generation CLD work packages: From conceptual ideas through to experimental delivery and data analysis. Openly sharing findings and pro-actively seeking scientific input and critique.
- Assisting in the authoring of detailed technical reports and process transfer documents required for cell bank transfer to GSK’s GMP facility and as primary information for regulatory facing documents.
- Staying current with the latest regulatory requirements and advances in cell line associated technologies. Implement findings according to business needs.
- Pro-actively working with key stakeholders (e.g. Disruptive Technologies, Upstream Process Research, GMP-Operations) to ensure alignment of processes and practices.
- Contributing to project and matrix teams as appropriate.
- Seeking all opportunities to develop and maintain a strong Intellectual Property position.
- Maintaining relationships with external professional, trade, and scientific organisations consistent with GSK business needs.
- PhD in a relevant cell biology focused discipline or BSc/MSc in a relevant discipline with 4+ years industrial experience
- Demonstrable experience in Mammalian cell culture (preferably CHO)
- Excellent planning, communication and interpersonal skills
- Exposure to Cell Line Development in an industrial setting and a good understanding of typical workloads, challenges and bottlenecks that may be encountered
- Experience in any of the following would be a benefit
- Liquid-handling automation and programming/ Flow cytometry/high-content imaging/genome engineering
- Evidence of implementing innovative technical solutions in their research/ or work.
- Experience with data visualisation skills (Spotfire/JMP/Tableau)