What if…you could join an organization that creates, resources, and builds life sciences companies that invent breakthrough technologies in order to transform health care and sustainability?

Flagship VL59, Inc. is a privately held, well-funded, early-stage biotechnology company leveraging novel insights in RNA biology.  Flagship VL59’s proprietary platform identifies novel disease targets and develops new therapeutic modalities targeting RNA, providing new strategies to treat or cure a range of diseases including rare genetic diseases, neurological diseases, and cancers.

Flagship VL59, Inc. was founded in Flagship’s venture creation engine, where companies such as Moderna Therapeutics (NASDAQ: MRNA), Rubius Therapeutics (NASDAQ: RUBY), and Editas Medicines (NASDAQ: EDIT) were conceived and created.  Since Flagship’s founding in 2000, the firm has originated and fostered the development of more than 100 scientific ventures, resulting in over $34 billion in aggregate value, 500+ issued patents, and more than 50 clinical trials for novel therapeutic agents.  

Position Summary:

We are seeking a Principal Scientist/Associate Director in drug discovery and biochemistry to join our passionate team of scientists. You will take an active role in helping to build a new therapeutic modality leveraging novel RNA biology. You will work on a team alongside other VL59 scientists to develop strategies to discover and validate small molecules to targets responsible for driving disease. You will be responsible for driving small molecule drug discovery projects targeting novel protein targets, including high throughput screening campaigns, hit-to-lead workflows, and validation in cell-based assays. A strong background in industrial drug discovery is therefore required. The output of these efforts will be both a novel platform for attacking diseases and a pipeline of discovery projects, both of which will propel VL59 forward.

Successful candidates will be self-starters, able to thrive in a fast-paced, action-oriented, team environment and display a clear passion for science and impact. The individual will have demonstrated evidence of agility and nimbleness to progress scientific discoveries, and an overt attitude of positivity when facing challenges. They will be dedicated to scientific development and growth outside their comfort zone by constantly learning.


  • Drive biochemistry strategy for small molecule drug discovery projects from hit stage through lead candidate selection and in vitro and in vivo validation
  • Lead biology experiments to assess targets, biochemically evaluate candidate small molecules, and support drug discovery of several high value but unprecedented target proteins
  • Develop and implement assays for the biochemical characterizations of small molecule binding kinetics, protein stability, and interaction specificity
  • Manage outsourced biochemistry and cell biology resources, establishing and maintaining excellent working relationships with external providers
  • Manage a growing team of internal scientists and RAs
  • Work collaboratively in cross-functional drug discovery teams
  • Prepare and deliver scientific updates to the Management Team and Advisors


  • Ph.D in Chemical Biology, Pharmacology or Biochemistry
  • 5-10 years of industrial drug discovery experience, with a track record of high-quality project deliveries, ideally from project inception to clinical candidate delivery.
  • Experience with validating/prosecuting biological targets with beyond-rule-of-5 small molecules. Experience working with degrader technologies, such as PROTACs and molecular glues, is a plus.
  • Demonstrated experience in managing outsourced resources with evidence of solving challenges
  • Sound knowledge of other disciplines involved in drug discovery (Molecular Biology, RNA biology, Chemical Biology, Chemical SAR, Drug Metabolism, etc)
  • Demonstrated ability to work with and lead highly skilled teams in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial and technical environment
  • Excellent communication and presentation skills, capable of conveying scientific information in a clear and thorough manner.

More About Flagship Pioneering

We are creative optimists and we would love for you to consider joining our team!  See all our open opportunities across Flagship Pioneering’s Ecosystem!

Flagship Pioneering conceives, creates, resources, and develops first-in-category life sciences companies to transform human health and sustainability. Since its launch in 2000, the firm has applied a unique hypothesis-driven innovation process to originate and foster more than 100 scientific ventures, resulting in over $34 billion in aggregate value. To date, Flagship is backed by more than $4.4 billion of aggregate capital commitments, of which over $1.9 billion has been deployed toward the founding and growth of its pioneering companies alongside more than $10 billion of follow-on investments from other institutions. The current Flagship ecosystem comprises 41 transformative companies, including:  Axcella Health (NASDAQ: AXLA), Denali Therapeutics (NASDAQ: DNLI), Evelo Biosciences (NASDAQ: EVLO),  Foghorn Therapeutics, Indigo Ag, Kaleido Biosciences (NASDAQ: KLDO), Moderna (NASDAQ: MRNA), Rubius Therapeutics (NASDAQ: RUBY), Sana Biotechnology, Seres Therapeutics (NASDAQ: MCRB), and Syros Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: SYRS).

We believe pioneering is best done by teams, and that it is a process that can be taught, learned, and replicated.  Learn more about our Company Creation Model.

Can Breakthrough Innovations Be Made Systematically? A Conversation With Noubar Afeyan, Flagship Pioneering’s CEO.

Recruitment & Staffing Agencies:  Flagship Pioneering and its affiliated Flagship Lab companies (collectively, “FSP”) do not accept unsolicited resumes from any source other than candidates.  The submission of unsolicited resumes by recruitment or staffing agencies to FSP or its employees is strictly prohibited unless contacted directly by Flagship Pioneering’s internal Talent Acquisition team.   Any resume submitted by an agency in the absence of a signed agreement will automatically become the property of FSP, and FSP will not owe any referral or other fees with respect thereto.

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