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Senior Research Scientist - Discovery

Date: Jul 16, 2021

Location: Philadelphia, PA, US

Company: Spark Therapeutics

Join the Spark Team


We were born of innovation, springing from the curiosity, imagination and dedication of remarkable scientists and healthcare visionaries. Our shared mission is to challenge the inevitability of genetic disease by discovering, developing, and delivering treatments in ways unimaginable – until now.


We don’t follow footsteps. We create the path.

The Senior Research Scientist is a key member of the Discovery Team that participates in the development of Spark’s gene therapy platform, identifying new AAV vectors and novel delivery approaches with improved safety and efficacy profiles.   


He/she will be responsible for:

  • Creating and developing novel approaches to optimize delivery, immunogenicity, potency, and durability of gene therapy vectors.
  • Participating in and/or overseeing discovery projects in support of current and future discovery programs.
  • Designing, constructing, and evaluating optimized vectors for gene therapy. Conceive and support in vitro/in vivo studies to assess cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating vector delivery, safety, and efficacy.
  • Developing assays and analyzing data independently. Summarizing and communicating scientific findings in the form of study reports, presentations to senior leadership, peer-reviewed manuscripts, and oral/poster presentations.

•     Initiating and managing joint programs and collaborations with external parties.





70%  Design and construct novel gene expression vectors in support of new and existing Discovery programs. Execute bench experiments to assess delivery, efficacy, and safety performance of produced vectors. Extensive literature review, champion new gene delivery approaches from ideation to proof of biology experiments.

15%  Design experiments, organize, discuss, and record experimental data

10%  Generate technical reports, prepare presentation slides, generate novel concepts

5%  Trainings, lab meetings and administration work.




  • Typically has a PhD degree in a relevant life sciences field such as cell biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, immunology, virology, or genetics/genomics.
  • 3 to 5 years of post-degree research experience. Academic post-doctoral or industry experience (preferred).
  • Subject matter expert in the fields of gene and protein engineering, gene therapy, synthetic or systems biology, or immunology. Experience with AAV vectors and gene therapy is strongly preferred.
  • Experience in general and advanced lab techniques such as molecular cloning and plasmid design and construction, qPCR, ELISA, cell culture, plate-based reporter and/or enzymatic activity assays, SDS-PAGE/western blotting, flow cytometry, etc.
  • Proven ability to work independently in hands-on laboratory setting, self-motivated to learn and develop new techniques, perform multiple tasks simultaneously, keep accurate records, follow instructions, and comply with company policies.
  • Experience with design and execution of in vivo/in vitro experiments, analysis, presentation, and scientific writing of data generated.




  • An ability to innovate, learn new technologies, and develop assays from the ground up.
  • Strong analytical skills and problem-solving capabilities.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Professional commitment to performance excellence.
  • Ability to mentor junior team members.
  • Rigorous and conscientious, exhibiting care and thoroughness in data interpretation.
  • Proactive and collaborative mindset, exhibiting an enthusiastic team attitude.
  • Meticulous record keeping, documentation, and reporting of research.
  • Goal-driven and strong organizational skills.
  • Experience managing external collaborations is a plus.




Nearest Major Market: Philadelphia