Research Associate, Drug Product Development

Moderna Therapeutics


March 26, 2014

Position Summary

The primary responsibilities for the Research Associate, Drug Product Development will be to support the Process Development team to develop, characterize, and optimize messenger RNA therapeutics. Knowledge of nucleic acid formulation, delivery, analytical characterization, and development is preferred. The Research Associate will design and conduct experiments to develop mRNA formulations, critically evaluate production process steps, and analyze, interpret, and document experimental results. The Research Associate will work closely with scientists in Process Development to develop mRNA formulations at lab scale and scale-up the process for manufacturing. The position will support cross-functional teams in Research and Development, Production, Quality, and Analytical Development, and the candidate must be able to work in a multi-disciplinary environment.


  • Design and conduct experiments to optimize mRNA formulations
  • Critically evaluate the formulation process and conduct experiments to demonstrate robustness
  • Support scale-up of drug product manufacturing
  • Analytical characterization of mRNA and formulations
  • Analyze, interpret, and document experimental data
  • Support Process and Analytical Development teams

Minimum Qualifications

  • 2 years experience in preformulation and/or formulation development
  • BS in Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Biochemical Engineering, Biochemistry or closely related field

Preferred Qualifications

  • BS with 2-5 years or MS with 2+ years of industry experience in Oligonucleotide, Pharmaceutical, or Biotechnology development
  • Experience with nucleic acid formulations
  • Experience with analytical characterization techniques including, reverse-phase HPLC, SEC, ion exchange HPLC, capillary electrophoresis, differential scanning calorimetry, ultraviolet absorbance spectroscopy, qPCR
  • Knowledge of nucleic acid chemistry and biology
  • Knowledge of GMP and GLP regulations


  • Effective verbal and written communication skills
  • Detail oriented
  • Ability to manage multiple projects
  • Driven to complete assignments
  • Able to work in a cross-functional, matrix, environment

Why join Moderna Therapeutics

Moderna Therapeutics is pioneering messenger RNA therapeutics™, an entirely new in vivo drug modality that produces human proteins or antibodies inside patient cells, which are in turn active intracellularly or secreted. This breakthrough platform addresses currently undruggable targets and offers a superior alternative to existing drug modalities for a wide range of disease conditions. Moderna has developed a broad intellectual property estate including 200 patent applications with 10,000 claims ranging from novel nucleotide chemistries to specific drug compositions. The company plans to develop and commercialize its innovative mRNA drugs—initially for rare diseases and oncology—while partnering drug candidates in other therapeutic areas in order to rapidly deliver this innovation to patients.

Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Moderna is privately held and was founded in 2010 by Flagship VentureLabs in association with leading scientists from Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Moderna recently signed a collaboration agreement with Astra Zeneca that provided a $240MM upfront payment (plus milestone payments).

Moderna is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person’s race, color, gender, age, religion, national origin, ancestry, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation or any characteristic protected under applicable law. Moderna will make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with known disabilities, in accordance with applicable law.

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