Associate Scientist - Discovery Research

Facility:  Research

Lexington, MA, US

About the Department

Dicerna, a Novo Nordisk company, is focused on driving innovation in RNAi (ribonucleic acid interference) to selectively target and silence genes that cause or contribute to disease. Our proprietary GalXC™ and GalXC-Plus™ RNAi technologies have the potential to address conditions that are difficult or impossible to treat with other modalities. Established as a Transformational Research Unit (TRU) following Novo Nordisk’s acquisition of Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in December 2021, the Dicerna TRU is a unique new organization within Novo Nordisk that brings together the best of both worlds – the agility, collaborative pioneering spirit and calculated risk-taking profile of a biotech along with the scale, resources and capabilities of a global leader in drug development. With approximately 200 researchers, scientists, drug developers and operational staff, we are a team of inventive and entrepreneurial thinkers pushing the boundaries of science to create and drive new RNAi-based therapies for both rare and more prevalent diseases from the bench to the clinic. Together, we are driving change. Are you ready to make a difference?


The Position

The Discovery Research team is looking for a highly motivated Research Associate/Associate Scientist to help with the discovery and development of GalXC-Plus RNAi therapeutics. This candidate will be responsible for helping prosecute in vivo and in vitro studies exploring the pharmacodynamics and efficacy for novel RNAi therapeutics and to advance the GalXC and GalXC-Plus platforms. The ideal candidate is a self-starter who is eager to learn, highly collaborative, and detail oriented. The successful candidate will be asked to carry out experiments and analysis in a manner reflecting an organization that demands scientific rigor and technical excellence with training and mentorship from a Scientist. Applicants interested in oligonucleotide therapeutics, gene therapy, or pharmaceutical sciences are encouraged to apply.



This role will report to a Scientist II in Discovery Research.


Essential Functions

  • Laboratory Techniques:
    • Tissue sample processing (protein and mRNA) for downstream bioassays
    • Generating and analyzing molecular assay data using a variety of methodologies (examples: quantitative imaging, qRT-PCR, plate-based assays, enzyme assays) with rigorous scientific standards, troubleshooting where needed, and careful documentation practices
    • In-life operations: Rodent dosing, sampling and necropsy; collaborating cross-functionally to promote efficient operations in a high-volume on-site animal care facility (ACF)
    • Development, validation, optimization, and troubleshooting of molecular endpoint bioassays
  • Additional Responsibilities
    • Careful documentation practices, i.e., maintenance of electronic laboratory notebooks
    • Data package preparation and presentation
    • Participation in team and departmental meetings
    • Cross-functional communication


Physical Requirements

0-10% overnight travel required. Ability to lift 0-10 lbs.



  • BS/MS in Biology, Biochemistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences or equivalent
  • 1+ years of relevant laboratory experience in an appropriate industrial or academic environment
  • Experience in downstream bioassays including one or more of the following: qPCR, ELISA/Western blot, IHC
  • Practical knowledge in basic biochemical and molecular biology principles including RNAi theory/practice
  • Preferred: Experience in rodent pharmacology including dosing and necropsy; familiarity with PK/PD concepts
  • Commitment to careful and thorough technical documentation, including electronic laboratory notebooks and study reports
  • Strong organizational, IT and communication skills; ability to interact effectively on multidisciplinary teams and participate in our dynamic company culture
  • Ability to multitask and prioritize
  • (Title and compensation based on experience level)


We commit to an inclusive recruitment process and equality of opportunity for all our job applicants.


At Novo Nordisk we recognize that it is no longer good enough to aspire to be the best company in the world. We need to aspire to be the best company for the world and we know that this is only possible with talented employees with diverse perspectives, backgrounds and cultures. We are therefore committed to creating an inclusive culture that celebrates the diversity of our employees, the patients we serve and communities we operate in. Together, we’re life changing.


Novo Nordisk is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, ethnicity, color, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by local, state or federal laws, rules or regulations.


Novo Nordisk requires all new hires to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to the first date of employment. As required by applicable law, Novo Nordisk will consider requests for reasonable accommodation.


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