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Director, Neuroscience Unit – Ref. 145 A

Position: Director, Neuroscience Unit

IRBM is a drug discovery and development company with a track record of success in accelerating and executing the translation of novel discoveries into clinically relevant therapeutic modalities, including small molecules, peptides and monoclonal antibodies.  IRBM is headquartered in Pomezia (Rome), Italy and provides several integrated pre-clinical laboratory services across the entire drug discovery process, ranging from target validation to clinical candidate molecule selection.  The company operates trough collaborations with a number of Pharmaceutical companies, Biotech’s as well as research institutes and non-profit foundations working in a range of disease indications.  IRBM is committed to the discovery and development of novel therapeutic agents that can help fight and cure diseases.

Job Description

  • IRBM is looking for a highly-motivated and energetic Neuroscientist to lead and expand our efforts in developing novel therapeutics for CNS disorders, in particular for neuro-degenerative diseases. The successful candidate will join a team-oriented, fast-paced, and cross-disciplinary small biotech/CRO environment. As the leader of our Neuroscience Unit, the successful candidate will be responsible for the management of the current pre-clinical pipeline and for the expansion of our portfolio of projects and partners in neurodegenerative diseases.  She/he will have a solid background in Neuroscience and demonstrated industry experience in leading biology-driven drug discovery programs for CNS disorders.  The ideal candidate will have experience in molecular and cellular biology, strong familiarity with the use of disease-relevant cell-based systems and mouse models and will have a in depth understanding of the cellular pathways that contribute to neurodegenerative diseases. As a key member of our R&D leadership team, she/he will provide strategic input to guide portfolio management decisions.  The successful candidate will report directly to the CSO and is expected to significantly impact company performance by leading our neuroscience capabilities.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Responsible for the establishment and management of scientific relationships with CNS R&D partner organizations, including non-profit foundations working on rare CNS disorders.
  • Strong and effective leadership of a team of biologists, including PhD level scientists, for neurodegeneration drug discovery; prioritize internal and external activities to ensure timely and on-budget delivery on project goals, and projects alignment with company objectives.
  • Build and maintain high quality and effective interactions with colleagues in biology, chemistry, screening, in vivo pharmacology and DMPK to achieve and support projects goals and objectives.
  • Responsible to maintain and expand our portfolio of partners and clients in Neuroscience; pro-actively contribute to feed the pipeline of internal projects with new research ideas and initiatives.
  • Inspire and mentor laboratory members and junior colleagues in problem solving, rigorous research and smart decision making.
  • Lead the preparation of peer-reviewed publications, scientific reports and grants application as required.
  • Participate in company portfolio and stage-gate reviews, lead the preparation and presentation of programs advancement.
  • Represent the company as the scientific expert in neuroscience, in collaborations and alliances with both internal and external partners.
  • Maintain high standards of laboratory safety, comply with all safety requirements according to Italian laws.

Leadership competencies/skills:

  • Demonstrated scientific reputation through scientific accomplishments related to target identification and/or drug discovery and/or biomarkers development for neurodegenerative disorders.
  • Proven capability to lead by influence, to build and guide cross-functional teams both with external partners and internally, and to implement and execute neurodegeneration R&D programs.
  • Familiarity with the preclinical stages of the drug discovery process and the current approaches associated with biology, assays development, chemistry and drug metabolism.
  • Work effectively in a multi-disciplinary environment that requires close collaboration with scientists that have different expertise and experience. Exhibit high degree of flexibility and adaptability when projects and goals shift.
  • Outstanding ability to manage and motivate team and find creative solutions to problems; demonstrated negotiation and conflict resolution skills.
  • Proven ability to manage timelines and resources to drive projects toward key decision points.
  • An extensive personal network with KOLs and biotech/pharma companies in neuroscience is highly desirable.
  • Excellent organization skills: organized, results-driven, detail-oriented, and able to multi-task.
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills (in English) are essential.


  • D. in Neuroscience or related field with 13-15+ years of industry/biotech/CRO leadership experience.
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