Scientist II, Statistical Genetics-Neuroscience

  • Cambridge, MA
  • Full-time
  • Department: Research & Development
  • Region: US

Company Description

We are seeking a strong, method-oriented statistical geneticist and/or quantitative geneticist to join Biogen’s Human Genetics team. This team is responsible for providing genetics and genomics expertise to the R&D organization with a focus on developing and applying cutting-edge genetic approaches to support early target discovery and validation.

Job Description

Effective use of disruptive technologies is at the heart of Biogen’s strategy to discover and develop highly differentiated medicines. We are investing in human genetics and genomics, digital technologies and advanced analytics to address scientific questions that will improve the discovery and development of the next generation of therapeutics. The Translational Biology Organization in Research and Early Development at Biogen is responsible for providing and analyzing genetic, genomic, cellular and in vivo data to support target validation and the therapeutic rationale for Biogen’s drug discovery research teams and clinical development programs. 

The incumbent will be a human geneticist, biostatistician or epidemiologist who has hands-on experience on how to develop or apply statistical genetic principles and methods to analyze large population or familial genetic data sets, electronic health records, clinical data, and/or laboratory data for interrogating complex phenotypes. A track record of active participation in academic consortia, public-private partnerships or multi-partner industry collaborations, ideally with having had leading roles, is desired. Experience in Biogen’s focus area of neurological, neurodegenerative diseases and neuropsychiatry or associated intermediate phenotypes will be a plus. 

Biogen has made substantial investments in external partnerships and collaborations and a focus of the Human Genetics team will be how to best leverage these resources. This includes leveraging data from the UK Biobank Life Sciences Consortium (that by 2019 will have generated whole-exome sequencing data on 500,000 UK Biobank participants), FinnGen (a precompetitive partnership generating genotypes on 500,000 Finns with longitudinal health data), Open Targets (a platform to integrate supporting evidence for the suitability of genes as drug targets), as well as other public and proprietary resources to initiate novel and enhance existing drug development programs.

The incumbent will work in an experienced team of statistical geneticists and closely collaborate with researchers in the broader Translational Biology group, therapeutic area scientists, clinical researchers, and other interested parties to identify the most relevant opportunities to influence decisions and increase our probability of success in developing new medicines to diseases of the highest medical need. This will include close interactions with functional genomics scientists and biologists to design laboratory experiments to determine the molecular and cellular-level function of genetic findings, as well as early/late stage clinical development leaders to inform human studies with genetic data.


The Scientists for Statistical and Quantitative Genetics will be expected to :

  • Establish and use advanced statistical genetic and genetic epidemiological analytical techniques with the aim to discover and validate drug targets and biomarkers, and to identify mechanisms of action based on human data.
  • Be responsible for ensuring Biogen is at the forefront of statistical genetics, establishing best practices and standards, and the development and execution of statistical genetics plans to support Biogen’s R&D programs.
  • Contribute expertise on human genetic data to support Biogen’s broader human knowledge base.
  • Take on leadership functions for external collaborations that ensure the human genetics capabilities and resources remain on the leading edge of emerging new technologies and analytical approaches.



• Ph.D., M.D., or M.D./Ph.D. in a relevant scientific discipline

• Several years of post-graduate experience analyzing biological and/or medical data sets

• Expertise in the field of statistical genetics and working knowledge of emerging approaches to best utilize human genetic data; for example, quantitative trait analysis, multi-phenotype analysis, Mendelian Randomization methods, or genetic risk score methodologies

• Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively within research project teams

• Excellent communication and presentation skills. Ability to translate complex statistical/informatics terminology in such a way that scientifically trained individuals can readily understand their significance



• Expertise in working with complex phenotype data, such as electronic medical records (EMRs) or image data

• Experience working with neurological or neuropsychiatric diseases and/or their associated intermediate phenotypes

• Knowledge of the pharmaceutical drug discovery and development process with experience in pre-clinical and/or clinical drug development

Additional Information

All your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.

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