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Genetics Lead


Braine L'alleud, Walloon Brabant, Belgium

Job Function:  Research & Early Development
Job ID:  66167

Genetics Lead

Data & Translational Sciences, Translational Medicine

Location: Braine l’Alleud


UCB is a fast-moving global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines and solutions to transform the lives of people living with severe diseases.


At UCB, human genetics is recognised as a valuable tool in drug discovery and development. The Genetics group at UCB works globally across both the Drug Discovery and Clinical Development functions, with a focus on leveraging genetics to support target identification and validation as well as clinical development projects i.e. pharmacogenetics. 


This role will be responsible for:

Forming the bridge between the Genetics group and the local Discovery and Clinical Development groups in Braine-l’Alleud, Belgium, leading efforts to ensure interpretation and extraction of maximal value from results.  The ability to run analyses, such as PheWAS, on UCB specific platforms will be required. 


The incumbent will support the development and implementation of the Genetics strategy, with a focus on the pharmacogenetic component.  By working with the Therapeutic Areas and

Biomarker Leaders, the incumbent will provide expert leadership and support in ensuring that genetics is being systematically, but optimally applied across UCBs drug development portfolio, with careful consideration of risk:benefit.  Responsibilities will include supporting the development of the pharmacogenetics strategy, as well as supporting and delivering specific projects, both directly and through the Biomarker Leaders.  The successful candidate will lead efforts to ensure integration of genetics data with other data sets, using machine learning approaches, to ensure an holistic approach is used to extract maximal value from the data.  


The successful candidate will be a key member of a highly motivated and dynamic multidisciplinary project team consisting of geneticists and computational biologists.  As part of the Data and Translational Sciences, and the Translational Medicine groups, the candidate will have access to, and work with, the required complementary functions including bioinformaticians, data scientists, biomarker experts and clinical development teams.     


The role will support UCBs cross-functional interactions primarily in Braine-l’Alleud, although pharmacogenetics will need to be implemented globally.



  • To develop cross-functional relationships, ensuring all projects are informed and supported by genetic data
  • To lead and deliver projects for Therapeutic Areas and Early Clinical Development
  • To support development, implementation and integration of pharmacogenetics across UCB, and work with Early Development teams and Biomarker Leaders
  • To generate, interpret and follow up on data  
  • To work with the Genetics team to generate data to support projects, including running in silico analyses and coordinating wet lab work as required.



Seven years plus experience of devising, implementing and delivering human genetics projects. 3 years plus of pharmaceutical industry experience, with experience of implementing genetics support for clinical development



  • Direct experience of the application of genetics and genetic approaches to drug discovery and development 
  • Direct experience of working within multidisciplinary projects teams within the Pharmaceutical sector
  • Direct experience of devising, implementing and leading genetics strategies to support clinical development programs i.e. pharmacogenetics.  Experience with protocol/ICF development is a plus.
  • Direct experience of generating, analysing and using genetic data generated through multiple platforms, including next generation sequencing (NGS) and genome-wide association studies (GWAS).  Direct experience of interpreting and contextualizing genetic data for non-geneticists.
  • Problem solving skills



  • Experience/understanding of approaches and methods in functional genomics
  • Experience/understanding of ML/AI approaches



  • Ability to build cross-functional relationships.  Strong inter-personal skills
  • Ability to work both independently and in a team to deliver against deadlines
  • Ability to work across diverse functions
  • Ability to interpret and communicate efficiently the outcomes of analytical work to non-expert audience
  • Ability to manage more than one project, with variable levels of complexity and scope.  Experience in agile/iterative project management and development
  • Ability to steer open thoughts into a firm decision and sell the vision for the projects
  • Excellent communication skills in English required and the ability to use these skills effectively in an international and multicultural environment


To apply please go to www.ucb.com/careers.

Discover more about the remarkable UCB Talent Blends and how you can contribute to the mix at www.ucb.com/careers.


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