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Associate Principal Scientist, Genomics

Location Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States Job ID R-148536 Date posted 23/01/2023

Associate Principal Scientist, Genomics

Location: Gaithersburg, Maryland, US

Do you have expertise in, and passion for Bioinformatics? Would you like to play a pivotal role that impacts the delivery of novel biologics drugs for oncology, respiratory and cardiovascular diseases in a company that follows the science and turns ideas into life changing medicines? Then AstraZeneca might be for you!


AstraZeneca is a global, science-led, patient-focused biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialisation of prescription medicines for some of the world’s most serious diseases. But we’re more than one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies.


Our Gaithersburg, Maryland facility creates life-changing medicines for people around the world. This campus employs more than 3,500 experts in our field and is only a short drive from Washington, DC. This modern and vibrant scientific campus is the home of R&D and Oncology in the US. Here, we play host to some of the most pioneering technology and lab spaces, all designed to inspire collaboration and cross-functional science. We believe employees benefit from being challenged and inspired at work. We are dedicated to creating a culture of inclusion and collaboration.

The Gaithersburg site offers a variety of amenities to help boost productivity and help keep our employees happy and healthy. This includes a fitness center, employee healthcare clinic, electric vehicle charging stations, dry cleaning, full-service cafeteria, and copy center. This is where you’ll find newly designed, activity-based workspaces to suit a variety of working styles while increasing collaboration between teams.


In the Oncology Business Unit, we relentlessly follow the science, challenging the status quo to deliver more effective treatments to patients in need. Our dedication means we purposefully push back the limits of knowledge to change the practice of medicine. To ensure no patient is left behind, no matter what stage of disease.

Fast paced, it takes agility and responsiveness to stay committed in our pursuit of excellence. We work with focus to seek the unanswered questions – innovating, challenging accepted norms, quick decision-making and taking calculated risks. A place of trust, it’s an opportunity to take accountability, be brave, speak up, step up and redefine Oncology, now and in the future. Be a part of improving lives. This is the time to join the team who is confident that cures for cancer are within our grasp.

The Biologics Engineering team is responsible for the discovery and optimisation of next generation biological drug candidates for all key therapy areas across AstraZeneca, and for developing in-house biologics discovery platforms and novel drug modalities to address unmet medical needs.

Central to this effort is the development of end-to-end data management and analysis capabilities to deliver novel biologics drugs. You will be part of an interdisciplinary Bioinformatics team, working at the cutting edge of research and development to create an active learning system for biologics engineering, in which model predictions guide lab experiments, lab automation generates high-throughput data for model training, and predictive models are updated as new data are generated. As part of this effort, you will collaborate closely with experts in data management, software engineering, lab automation, computational modelling, and machine learning, with access to biologics R&D data across AstraZeneca and the potential to generate new data to inform predictive models.

What you’ll do

This role provides the opportunity for a passionate and motivated Bioinformatician to develop genomic analysis capabilities that will significantly impact the delivery of the novel biologics drugs of the future.

  • Work collaboratively with data and drug discovery scientists to develop methods that generate actionable biological insights from genomic and mass spectrometry data.
  • Implement automated analysis pipelines for next generation sequencing of immunoglobulin repertoires to support therapeutic discovery platforms.
  • Build web-based interfaces to inform bench scientists of the status of the analysis.
  • Perform biologics sequence analysis and annotation and develop methods to predict the effects of sequence on biologics function.
  • Grow your expertise in biologics engineering by learning from leading scientists in the field. Use your combined expertise in biologics engineering and bioinformatics to identify new opportunities to substantially improve genomic analysis.
  • Keep abreast of new software and hardware technologies that could be onboarded to best address the needs of antibody discovery workflows.
  • Work collaboratively with internal scientists, academic partners, and external software developers to implement novel solutions for next generation sequencing analysis.

Essential for the role

  • PhD or equivalent research experience in relevant computational field.
  • 10+ years of experience in bioinformatics analysis of genomics data.
  • Experience in next generation sequencing data analysis of immunoglobulin repertoires, including quality filtering, alignment, and annotation.
  • Experience with Python programming for developing data analysis pipelines.
  • Strong communication skills and excellent attention to detail, capable of developing good working relationships with diverse individuals.
  • Experience working within a team environment.
  • Acts with integrity and does the right thing.

Desirable for the role

  • Experience applying bioinformatics methods to biologics drug discovery.
  • Experience with long read nanopore sequence analysis.
  • Experience using machine learning methods to analyse genomics data.
  • Experience with distributed computing environments including cloud-based systems.

Why AstraZeneca?

At AstraZeneca, we 're dedicated to being a Great Place to Work. Where you are empowered to push the boundaries of science and unleash your entrepreneurial spirit. There’s no better place to make a difference to medicine, patients, and society. An inclusive culture that champions diversity and collaboration, and always committed to lifelong learning, growth, and development. We’re on an exciting journey to pioneer the future of healthcare.

So, what’s next?

A place built on courage, curiosity, and collaboration – we make bold decisions driven by patient outcomes. Empowered to lead at every level, free to ask questions and take calculated risks that write the next chapter for our pipeline.

If you are swift to action, confident to lead, willing to collaborate, and passionate about the possibilities, then we are keen to hear from you!

Competitive salary and benefits package available.

We offer a competitive Total Reward program including a market driven base salary, bonus, and long-term incentive. We have a generous paid time off program and a comprehensive benefits package.

Where can I find out more

Connect with our recruiter on LinkedIn for a confidential discussion: Elva Chase ~

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AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements.

AstraZeneca requires all US employees to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 but will consider requests for reasonable accommodations as required by applicable law.

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Great culture, great work assignments, supportive management. Rotation opportunity within the company. They value inclusion and diversity.