Sr./Principal Scientist, Bioin...

Moderna Therapeutics, Inc

Sr./Principal Scientist, Bioinformatics, Computational Sciences
Position Summary

Moderna is seeking an exceptionally talented and highly motivated bioinformatician to lead the computational efforts central to the success of Caperna, a Moderna venture based in Cambridge MA. Caperna’s mission is to develop Personalized Cancer Vaccines (PCVs), delivering on the potential of both personalized medicine and mRNA vaccines for patients with aggressive tumors and high unmet medical need.

The successful candidate will be responsible for leading a variety of research projects to advance the science of PCVs through large-scale genomic data analysis, NGS algorithm development, and machine learning. This research is at the intersection of computational oncology, immunology, and mRNA vaccines, leveraging public and private datasets to develop tools and produce novel research findings for direct application in the clinic.

In addition, the individual will lead a small team in the ongoing design, development, testing, and improvement of a fully automated, end-to-end, clinically regulated software pipeline to design PCVs from tumor sequencing data. The successful candidate will thrive in a proactive, can-do culture and enjoy working in a small, cross-disciplinary team as well as collaborating with other computational scientists and software developers across the Moderna ecosystem.


  • Direct the development of new tools and algorithms for integrative analysis of DNA-seq, RNA-seq, and whole exome sequencing datasets in the context of neo-antigen discovery
  • Lead efforts in the analysis of large public datasets and databases, such as TCGA, IEDB, and GTEx, in order to generate or support novel hypotheses around cancer neo-antigens
  • Explore and implement external methods, technologies, and collaborations of value to the PCV platform
  • Leverage public cancer genomic data to support decisions on clinical indications and target populations
  • Contribute production-grade code to the clinically regulated vaccine design pipeline, following industry-standard software development procedures
  • Lead a small team that develops, maintains, tests, and deploys the vaccine design pipeline
  • Act as subject matter expert on DNA/RNA sequencing, bioinformatics algorithms, and genomic data

Minimum Qualifications

  • PhD in Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, Genomics, or similar
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience in an industry setting
  • Deep technical expertise in NGS data processing and analysis, including extensive hands-on experience with whole exome and RNA sequencing
  • Demonstrated leadership in directing novel research efforts using genomic data
  • Prior success in the design and development of complex data analysis pipelines and systems
  • Experience with the use of Python in bioinformatics, data science, and NGS data processing

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience with cancer genomics, ideally neo-antigen discovery
  • Deep understanding of immuno-oncology, with a knowledge of the current drug landscape
  • Ability to correctly apply modern techniques in data science and machine learning, such as feature engineering, cross-validation, clustering and PCA, and supervised learning
  • Advanced programming expertise in Python and proficiency in R
  • Experience with data modeling and relational databases, including SQL
  • Experience with the use of the Linux command line and REST web services
  • Experience contributing to (ideally leading) scientific software development efforts to deliver pipelines, tools, and data analyses
  • Experience working in a cloud computing environment using Amazon Web Services (EC2 and S3), Docker, Luigi, pandas, and/or Spark


  • Collaboration
  • Leading Change
  • Contributing to Team Success
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Desire for Impact

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