Variant Bio is a Seattle-based biotech company entering a rapid growth stage having recently closed a $100mm+ Series B. The company was started because we believe that human genetics has the power to transform drug development. We are working towards developing therapies to improve global health by studying the genes of people who are outliers for medically relevant traits. To facilitate this, we have built proprietary genomics and phenotyping platforms that allow us to dramatically reduce the cost of genomic studies and identify genetically-validated targets for therapeutic development.

All of our studies are co-designed with local partners: community groups, academics, and hospitals around the world, and we built Variant Bio from the ground up with ethics at its foundation. We recognize the contribution of our partners through an industry leading benefit-sharing program that dedicates 4% of our revenue and equity value to support local healthcare, sustainable development, education, research, and capacity-building initiatives.

Variant Bio is an equal opportunity employer that guarantees a work environment that respects and values diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

Job Description

We seek a passionate and creative individual with experience in all aspects of drug discovery and development to help build and lead Variant Bio’s new Therapeutics Discovery team. This team will be composed of experienced drug hunters capable of leading or contributing to all aspects of drug discovery (e.g. screening, chemistry, pharmacokinetics, safety, etc.) with an initial emphasis on external execution. As such, the ideal candidate will be expected to not only have experience with the full spectrum of considerations when discovering and optimizing therapeutics (primarily small molecules and antibodies), but also an ability to work effectively with external partners. Since we are an actively growing start-up, we also seek creative thinkers, agile learners and candidates with an unwavering willingness to do what is necessary to help build the company and mature a human-genetics-backed therapeutic pipeline. Our current disease areas of interest include kidney disease, liver fibrosis, inflammation, and neurodegenerative disorders.


  • Help build a world-class therapeutics discovery team for the company.
  • Optimize an approach that efficiently balances internal and external resources, and continuously evolve that approach as the company grows and matures.
  • Work closely with our disease area biology teams to move validated targets into discovery, establish an optimal therapeutic product profile, design a Discovery research operating plan to achieve that profile, and transfer any internal assays and model systems as appropriate.
  • Build a network of external providers or strategic partnerships to most effectively deliver development candidates with a high probability of success in the clinic.
  • Efficiently utilize budgets and internal resources to execute programs.  
  • Serve as a leader in R&D and work collaboratively across the organization to help build and mature a therapeutic pipeline for the company.
  • Recruit top talent into the company and serve as an internal mentor to junior team members.
  • Serve as an external champion of the company.


  • A Ph.D. in a life science discipline with at least 10 years of experience leading one or more therapeutic discovery programs and an outstanding reputation in your field. 
  • Experience leading one or more drug discovery programs from screening through to a development candidate, IND filing (preferred), or other bonafide successful conclusion.
  • Deep understanding of genetics-based drug discovery and the benefits thereof. 
  • Familiarity with the broad range of external discovery research-related providers and their strengths and weaknesses. 
  • An appreciable understanding of therapeutics development, from IND through to market. 
  • Experience leading and mentoring teams of scientists; an ability to recruit top talent.
  • Strong people skills with an ability and willingness to work on a multidisciplinary R&D team.
  • Independent, creative, detail-orientated, and a critical thinker. 
  • Disease area, public health, genetics or human adaptation expertise is an advantage.   
  • Compelled by the company’s mission of great science, a strong ethical stance, and benefit sharing.


  • Opportunity to be part of an early-stage startup entering a rapid growth phase.
  • Competitive, industry leading salary, and comprehensive benefits including medical, dental, vision, short and long term disability and life insurance.
  • 401(k) plan that includes an automatic 3% employer contribution.
  • Centrally located in Seattle’s Eastlake neighborhood in a new Alexandria building with modern facilities, including a gym.

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