We seek driven and accomplished immuno-oncologists at the principal scientist (junior group leader) level to join our Cancer Immuno-pharmacology (CIP) group in the Oncology Research & Development unit (ORD) of the company Worldwide R&D (WRD) division in La Jolla, California. Conceive and lead pre-clinical drug discovery and development projects in immuno-oncology, focusing on small molecules alone or in combination with biologics. Represent one of the areas T and NK cell biology, myeloid cell biology, immunosuppressive mechanisms in the tumor microenvironment, reprogramming of suppressive immune cells, tumor immunogenicity and antigen presentation, or tumor barrier mechanisms. In collaboration with partner lines, devise, guide and execute efficient strategies for target identification, prioritization and validation, drug discovery and drug development up to and including IND filing. Collaborate with clinical and business units to support clinical trials. Employ cutting-edge in vitro and in vivo animal and human cancer models. Lead project team meetings, and present updates to governance bodies and management. Write governance and regulatory documentation. Present non-proprietary results on major scientific conferences and publish them in leading journals. Complement the existing CIP group and provide immunology expertise to ORD and WRD.
Internal: Entire ORU group, including supervisors, peers and reports. Partner lines including PDM, DSRD, TRG, OBU, OTD, CTI, TCB, BDD, Rinat, Vaccine Group, Translational Oncology.
External: iTeos, CROs including WuXi, HDB, Crown Bio and others. Various vendors.
• Lead a research group to develop novel small molecule cancer immunotherapeutics.
• Represent one of the areas T and NK cell biology, myeloid cell biology, immunosuppressive mechanisms in the tumor microenvironment, reprogramming of suppressive immune cells, tumor immunogenicity and antigen presentation, or tumor barrier mechanisms.
• Collaborate with the company world-class chemical biology and functional genomics groups to identify novel mechanisms and targets limiting anti-tumor immune responses.
• Establish relevant in vitro and in vivo assays and models, with particular emphasis on humanized systems. Use them to validate and prioritize targets for improving anti-tumor immune responses, and to discover and develop target-modulating compounds.
• Lead high priority projects through all stages of preclinical development and IND filing. Collaborate with clinical and business units to support clinical trials.
• Translate cutting edge immuno-oncology research into development of innovative, first-in-class or best-in-class drugs. Generate innovative ideas and implement them as viable approaches.
• Generate, evaluate and present data. Lead or participate actively in due-diligence analyses, meeting reports, project team, governance and other meetings and journal clubs. Write governance and regulatory documentation.
• Act as a mentor in the company world-class postdoctoral program. Present non-proprietary results on major scientific conferences and publish them in premier journals.
• Train scientists, postdoctoral fellows and interns.
• Interact productively with internal and external groups, cross-functional teams and initiatives.
2-5 direct, individual contributing reports; indirect/matrixed reports.
Education and Experience:
• Ph.D. or M.D. in immunology + 4 yrs' experience in immunology, or a related discipline with strong postdoctoral experience in immuno-oncology or immunology evidenced by first-author publications in premier journals.
• At least 3 years of specific experience in cancer immunology.
• Strong publication record or equivalent achievements in industry.
• Emerging leadership skills with proven track record of supervising at least two direct reports over an extended period of time.
Technical Skill Requirements:
• Proven ability to make important scientific contributions to immuno-oncology, ideally by leading a small research team.
• Ability to stay on top of novel scientific developments and opportunities, and to identify and quickly enter relevant new fields to make significant contributions.
• Strong expertise in one of the areas T and NK cell biology, myeloid cell biology, immunosuppressive mechanisms in the tumor microenvironment, reprogramming of suppressive immune cells, tumor immunogenicity and antigen presentation, or tumor barrier mechanisms.
• Strong experience with in vitro and in vivo models of the tumor microenvironment, in particular in modulating Treg cells, MDSC or M2 macrophages, in augmenting tumor antigenicity, or in disrupting tumor barriers to improve immune cell entry.
• Proficiency in target identification, validation and mechanistic analysis.
• Industry candidates must have experience in preclinical drug development for immuno-oncology indications beyond mere screening stages. They should ideally have taken at least one compound into clinical trials.
• Ability to use multidisciplinary tumor immuno-phenotyping approaches for treatment optimization, target discovery and validation
• An ideal candidate has strong experience with human tissue culture systems (co-culture, histoculture, organoids, organ-on-a-chip) and/or humanized mice.
• An ideal candidate also has experience in using chemo-genomic or genomic screens (siRNA/shRNA, CRISPR) to identify immunologically important novel genes. Proven ability to develop the results into either translational applications, or into high-impact publications.
• Excellent written and oral communication and presentation skills in English. Proficiency in all common office and scientific software.
• Strong ability to multi-task and work efficiently and productively in a fast-paced, highly collaborative, matrixed and diverse team environment. Capacity to contribute to a vivid and challenging intellectual environment.
• Capability to identify, develop and manage successful external collaborations.
Lifting, sitting, standing, walking, bending, ability to perform mathematical calculations, ability to read, comprehend and process complex scientific matter, and to perform complex data analysis. Ability to travel by air, water and ground.
Non-standard Work Schedule, Travel:
Ability to accommodate non-standard work schedules due to experimental regimen or travel. Ability to adhere to safe work practices and wear full personal protective equipment. Ability to travel nationally and internationally.
Other Information - Internal
Colleagues who are issued an Incident Final Warning (IFW) on or after January 1, 2016, are not eligible to post and compete for a position for a period of 12-months from the date an IFW is issued.
EEO & Employment Eligibility
the company is committed to equal opportunity in the terms and conditions of employment for all employees and job applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, disability or veteran status. the company also complies with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and IRCA. the company is an E-Verify employer.
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