Research Leader - RNA Biology

Req ID:  81994

Saffron Walden, GB, CB10 1XL

For 70 years, Charles River employees have worked together to assist in the discovery, development and safe manufacture of new drug therapies. When you join our family, you will have a significant impact on the health and well-being of people across the globe. Whether your background is in life sciences, finance, IT, sales or another area, your skills will play an important role in the work we perform. In return, we’ll help you build a career that you can feel passionate about.

Job Summary

Charles River have an exciting opportunity for a self-motivated Senior Scientist / Research Leader to join our laboratories in Chesterford Research Park, Saffron Walden. This is a senior scientific role which will be predominantly lab based, providing the opportunity for you to drive forward and innovate the area of RNA biology.  


You will have a broad understanding of scientific and technical standards, assay principles, concepts and techniques gained through experience in Hit Identification screening and broader drug-discovery. A particular background in applying cutting edge molecular biology techniques to target validation together with experience of developing and performing RNA detection assays (ideally exploiting multi-parametric end-points) is desirable.

Within this role, you will be part of a cross-functional team of scientists working at the forefront of drug discovery, collaborating and influencing other groups across the organisation including computational chemistry, medicinal chemistry and DMPK.  You will be working on a range of targets and modalities, in order to solve complex problems, interpret and report data to advance drug discovery projects for our clients.  This challenging and dynamic environment will provide the ideal opportunity to showcase your expertise, develop your career and contribute directly to the discovery of new medicines.

Our ideal candidate will have a degree or PhD level qualification and several years’ proven industry experience in the field of drug discovery – ideally in molecular and/or RNA biology, along with a real passion for applying scientific expertise to drug discovery collaborations. Adept in working as part of a multi-disciplinary team, you will need to possess the flexibility required to work in a goal-oriented environment, as well as the following:

  • Experience in developing, optimising and executing plate-based in vitro biological assays in a wide range of transcriptional techniques, including multiplex qRT-PCR, viewRNA, ISH
  • Experience with laboratory automation and liquid handling used in drug discovery
  • Experience in troubleshooting biological assays to maintain data quality and delivery
  • Experience at application of novel molecular biology techniques for drug discovery and target validation, including RNA/ribo-seq, CRISPR, CHiP, mutagenesis, cell line generation, synthetic lethal screening
  • Ability to coach and mentor more junior scientists – providing scientific input to guide experimental planning and data interpretation
  • Ability to lead an area of science or technology in order to positively influence project direction and strategy
  • Confidence in presenting your scientific work to colleagues and clients
  • An ability to work to tight deadlines with strong organizational skills
  • An ability to work in a safe manner at all times ensuring adherence to procedures/SOPs
  • A pro-active and positive problem solving mind-set


All applicants must have the right to work in th UK before being considered. 


About Discovery
Discovery from Charles River is industry-proven in the successful development of novel therapies, with over 350 patents and 80 preclinical drug candidates delivered to our sponsors in the past 17 years. Backed by more than 650 scientists, our comprehensive, integrated portfolio employs the latest technology and platforms to provide chemistry, biology, and pharmacology services that support clients from the earliest stages of hit identification all the way through to IND. Our client-focused, collaborative approach creates true partnerships that anticipate challenges, overcome obstacles, and move us forward together on the journey of getting new drugs to market.


About Charles River
Charles River is an early-stage contract research organization (CRO). We have built upon our foundation of laboratory animal medicine and science to develop a diverse portfolio of discovery and safety assessment services, both Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) and non-GLP, to support clients from target identification through preclinical development. Charles River also provides a suite of products and services to support our clients’ clinical laboratory testing needs and manufacturing activities. Utilizing this broad portfolio of products and services enables our clients to create a more flexible drug development model, which reduces their costs, enhances their productivity and effectiveness to increase speed to market.


With over 17,000 employees within 90 facilities in 20 countries around the globe, we are strategically positioned to coordinate worldwide resources and apply multidisciplinary perspectives in resolving our client’s unique challenges. Our client base includes global pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, government agencies and hospitals and academic institutions around the world. And in 2019, revenue increased to $2.62 billion.


At Charles River, we are passionate about our role in improving the quality of people’s lives. Our mission, our excellent science and our strong sense of purpose guide us in all that we do, and we approach each day with the knowledge that our work helps to improve the health and well-being of many across the globe. We have proudly supported the development of ~85% of the drugs approved by the FDA in 2019.