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Senior Scientist, Molecular Discovery



South San Francisco, CA, USA
Posted on Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Job Description

Senior Scientist, Molecular Discovery– South San Francisco, CA: Participate in hands-on production and characterization of antibodies, antibody chimera, antibody fragments, antibody drug conjugates and execute key experiments to explore and advance novel modalities of protein-based therapeutics. Responsibilities include cloning, expression, and purification of antibodies; design of expression vectors and cloning constructs; protein expression in mammalian host cells and E. coli; biophysical and functional protein characterization; conjugation of small molecules and/or peptides; bioanalytical assay development and execution; protein engineering to improve efficacy of protein drug formats; and coordination of cross-functional collaborations for in vitro and in vivo assessments.


  • Must have a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry or Biochemistry and at least 5 years professional experience in a biotechnology or pharmaceutical setting or a Master’s degree in Chemistry or Biochemistry and at least 5 years professional experience in a biotechnology or pharmaceutical setting.

  • Experience must include protein engineering experience working with small antibody formats including VHHs and single chain fragments; and experience in phage display technology with antibody scaffolds.

  • Experience with bioconjugation of small molecules, e.g. biotin, or peptides to antibodies; experience in biophysical characterization and functional characterization of antibodies (ELISA, SPR, ITC, SEC, DSF); and experience with laboratory techniques related to production of antibodies and other types of proteins – manual and FPLC enabled protein purification via affinity capture (His tag, Fc tag) also required.

  • Must possess mastery in standard molecular biology – molecular cloning, Sanger sequencing analysis, mutagenesis, RNA/DNA extraction and prep, PCR; and a strong background in protein expression from E. coli and mammalian hosts (CHO/HEK293), optimization of expression, refolding insoluble proteins.

  • Familiarity with purification systems such as Akta and Biorad and with disease biology related to oncology or infectious diseases also required.

  • Must be self-motivated and forward thinking with an interest in being involved in multiple stages of project progression; and a team player with strong verbal and written communication skills.

  • Must have at least 5 research communications in the fields of Chemistry and Biologics as evidenced by peer-reviewed journals and/or presentations at scientific conferences.

  • 40 hours per week; M-F – 9am-5pm.

  • Must have proof of legal authority to work in the United States.

Employees working in roles that the Company determines require routine collaboration with external stakeholders, such as customer-facing commercial, or research-based roles, will be expected to comply not only with Company policy but also with policies established by such external stakeholders (for example, a requirement to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to access a facility or meet with stakeholders). Please understand that, as permitted by applicable law, if you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 and an essential function of your job is to call on external stakeholders who require vaccination to enter their premises or engage in face-to-face meetings, then your employment may pose an undue burden to business operations, in which case you may not be offered employment, or your employment could be terminated. Please also note that, where permitted by applicable law, the Company reserves the right to require COVID-19 vaccinations for positions, such as in Global Employee Health, where the Company determines in its discretion that the nature of the role presents an increased risk of disease transmission.

Current Employees apply HERE

Current Contingent Workers apply HERE

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

Our company is committed to inclusion, ensuring that candidates can engage in a hiring process that exhibits their true capabilities. Please click here if you need an accommodation during the application or hiring process.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, or disability status, or other applicable legally protected characteristics. For more information about personal rights under the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment laws, visit:

EEOC Know Your Rights

EEOC GINA Supplement​

Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination

We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively.

Learn more about your rights, including under California, Colorado and other US State Acts

U.S. Hybrid Work Model

Effective September 5, 2023, employees in office-based positions in the U.S. will be working a Hybrid work consisting of three total days on-site per week, generally Tuesday, Wednesday and either Monday or Thursday, although the specific days may vary by site or organization, with Friday designated as a remote-working day, unless business critical tasks require an on-site presence. This Hybrid work model does not apply to, and daily in-person attendance is required for, field-based positions; facility-based, manufacturing-based, or research-based positions where the work to be performed is located at a Company site; positions covered by a collective-bargaining agreement (unless the agreement provides for hybrid work); or any other position for which the Company has determined the job requirements cannot be reasonably met working remotely. Please note, this Hybrid work model guidance also does not apply to roles that have been designated as “remote”.

Under New York State, Colorado State, Washington State, and California State law, the Company is required to provide a reasonable estimate of the salary range for this job. Final determinations with respect to salary will take into account a number of factors, which may include, but not be limited to the primary work location and the chosen candidate’s relevant skills, experience, and education.

Expected salary range:

$125,000.00 - $196,800.00

Available benefits include bonus eligibility, health care and other insurance benefits (for employee and family), retirement benefits, paid holidays, vacation, and sick days. For Washington State Jobs, a summary of benefits is listed here.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully
Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme LLC, Rahway, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

Employee Status:



No relocation

VISA Sponsorship:


Travel Requirements:

No Travel Required

Flexible Work Arrangements:

Not Applicable


1st - Day

Valid Driving License:


Hazardous Material(s):


Job Posting End Date:06/16/2024

A job posting is effective until 11:59:59PM on the day BEFORE the listed job posting end date. Please ensure you apply to a job posting no later than the day BEFORE the job posting end date.

Requisition ID:R285749