Senior Director Protein Sciences - Protein Engineering, Production and Purification (m/f/d)

ascendis pharma is a fast-growing biopharmaceutical company with offices in Denmark, Germany, and the United States. We are applying our TransCon technology to build a leading, fully integrated biopharmaceutical company with an independent pipeline of long-acting prodrug therapies that address unmet needs. In addition to our current pipeline of three rare disease endocrinology candidates, we have established oncology as our second therapeutic area of focus. Ascendis is a dynamic place for employees to grow and develop their skills. As a member of our team, you can influence the direction of the company and help us create new therapies with potential for best-inclass efficacy, safety, and/or convenience. Take charge of your career by exploring opportunities within a growing Life Sciences Company and join us at our research site in Heidelberg/Germany as:

Senior Director Protein Sciences (m/f/d)

based in Heidelberg/Germany

The Opportunity:

  • We are seeking a highly motivated leader who has strong experience in high quality protein engineering, production and purification to support discovery programs and preclinical candidate selection. The successful candidate will head the newly formed Protein Sciences Group and contribute by providing therapeutic protein candidates by implementation of bacterial and mammalian cell production strategies and manufacturability assessment. It will be in a very close collaboration with the rest of the research team and in particular with the Protein Chemistry and the Analytics groups. The successful candidate will report to the Senior Vice President Innovation & Research and is expected to recruit and build a high performing team.

Your Responsibilities:

  • Build up and lead a strong Protein Science team including purchasing the needed equipment
  • Manage and motivate a team of scientists and technicians
  • Obtain in-depth knowledge of the therapeutic targets of interest and assist in setting priorities
  • Collaborate closely with other functions to provide therapeutic protein candidates of appropriate quality for use in in vitro and in vivo studies
  • Present at group meetings, global project team meetings, and site meetings.
  • Implement innovative strategies to improve protein production and quality to match current industry standards
  • Participate in cross-functional discovery teams, and effectively communicate information to appropriate groups and protein sciences staff
  • Communicate experimental findings accurately and concisely in both oral and written formats
  • Develop strategies and assays for manufacturability assessment leading to preclinical candidate selection
  • Participate in cross-functional teams to improve manufacturing yields of existing protein products
  • Ensure successful and timely hand over of developed processes to Product Development
  • Author and support intellectual property filings
  • Organize data and communicate results in internal and external scientific meetings
  • Strive for highest scientific standards
  • Take care of complying with rules of work safety, health, hygiene, environmental protection and accident prevention

Professional Requirements:

  • Ph.D. in Molecular Biology, Biochemistry or Protein Chemistry or related discipline with 8+ years of experience in the biotechnology, CRO/CMO or biopharma industry
  • Several years of experience in managing a protein science team is required
  • Possess in-depth, current knowledge for optimization of large molecules
  • Expertise in protein production in both bacterial and mammalian cells including transient transfection and stable cell generation
  • Expertise with various expression vectors and codon optimization strategies.
  • Experience in cell culture and fermentation of mammalian cells and bacterial cells (E. coli)
  • Expertise in manufacturability assessment of therapeutic biologics molecules is desired
  • Hands on experience in operating fermenters is desired
  • Experience in early stage biologics process development, manufacturing, and process characterization
  • Direct recruitment, onboarding and continual training of world-class protein engineers, molecular biologists, USP experts and biochemists.
  • Excellent written/oral English communication skills
  • Working knowledge of German would be considered a plu
  • Availability to travel is required (15%)

Personal Characteristics:

  • Energetic, resourceful self-starter with high integrity and a can-do attitude
  • Team-player comfortable in fast-moving, dynamic environments
  • Intellectually curious, enthusiastic, creative
  • Adaptable and resilient with a problem-solving orientation
  • Innovative and flexible
  • Demonstrate a commitment to the Ascendis values of Patients, Science and Passion
  • Interdisciplinary and intercultural mindset
  • Contribute to a culture that embraces continuous learning, development and collaboration


If you want to be part of our team, we offer you an exciting and challenging full-time position with attractive additional benefits in an entrepreneurial and international life science company.


Please send your comprehensive application (motivation letter, CV as well as all certificates and diplomas) to:

ascendispharma A/S
Tuborg Boulevard 12
DK-2900 Hellerup

ascendispharma GmbH
Im Neuenheimer Feld 584
D-69120 Heidelberg

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Über Ascendis Pharma GmbH

Ascendis Pharma is applying its innovative TransCon technology, which combines the benefits of prodrug and sustained release technologies, to develop a pipeline of best‐in‐class therapeutics that address significant unmet medical needs.  The TransCon technology can be applied to existing drug therapies, including proteins, peptides and small molecules, to create prodrugs...
Mehr über Ascendis Pharma GmbH


Die Vergütung für vergleichbare Positionen liegt im Mittel bei circa 67.953,00 € brutto im Jahr. Je nach Erfahrung und Qualifikation, sowie weiteren Faktoren kann dieser Schätzwert in unterschiedlichem Maße von der tatsächlich zu erwartenden Vergütung abweichen. Weitere Informationen zu Gehalt und Gehaltsverhandlung finden Sie in unserem Karriereratgeber.