Head, Centre for Biologic Therapies – WEHI

Posted: 22 October 2021
Closing: 1 December 2021

An excellent opportunity is available for a Head, Centre for Biologic Therapies to join Australia’s pre-eminent biomedical research institute`, in partnership with CSL Limited. 

About the position 

In partnership with CSL Limited, WEHI has established a new Centre for Biologic Therapies to provide a discovery pipeline focused on the development of biologic therapeutics, diagnostics and tools for discovery research. It will capitalise on WEHI’s expertise in B cell biology and target discovery, and a longstanding monoclonal antibody production facility, together with CSL’s expertise in antibody development/engineering. It will also synergize with the WEHI small molecule Drug Discovery Centre and Protein Production Facilities, thereby offering multiple translational paths for Institute researchers. 

WEHI is seeking an innovative scientist who can establish the new Centre, build and lead a research team and foster successful linkages and collaborations with other laboratories within the Institute, CSL and the wider medical research sector. The Centre Head will provide relevant cutting-edge expertise and strong strategic leadership in biologics drug development and will oversee delivery of the pipeline from project selection, progression through in vivo and in vitro biologic screening platforms to optimisation/engineering of lead biologic candidates. 

Key responsibilities include: 


  • Provide exemplary scientific acumen and technical leadership to drive establishment of the new Centre for Biologic Therapies, including recruitment of personnel. 
  • Provide expert scientific and technical guidance to the research team on state-of-the-art antibody discovery platforms and protein engineering approaches, particularly bacterial phage display of antibodies and nanobodies. 
  • Guide and coordinate projects through all discovery and development phases including project selection, screening strategies, strategic allocation across discovery platforms, setting criteria for progression of candidate antibodies. 

Governance and operations 

  • Develop a strategic vision and produce detailed annual plans and interim reports. 
  • Manage, lead and support personnel reporting to this role and ensure implementation of best practices around safety and compliance. 
  • Develop and manage the Centre budget, and individual project budgets. 
  • Manage and support the personnel reporting to this role, take responsibility for the team’s performance and professional development. 

Selection Criteria 

  • PhD and at least 10 years’ experience in recombinant antibody discovery and optimisation in an academic and/or industrial environment 
  • Relevant and demonstrated expertise leading a biologics drug discovery and development team 
  • Recognised scientific leader in biologics discovery and development platforms with a track record in therapeutic development of biologics 
  • Experience in project management and/or project co-ordination with proven ability to manage and interact with multidisciplinary teams to achieve milestones 
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills 
  • A leader who is able to listen to others, has a track record of developing talent and will be able to foster a team spirit between WEHI and CSL Limited 
  • An innovative mindset with a track record for creating and exploring new ideas 
  • Influencing, negotiation and conflict resolutions experience 
  • Ability to quickly identify critical project milestones and manage academic-commercial partnerships 

Terms of appointment 

This position is available for 3 years in a full-time capacity. Salary is Academic Level C-D ($126,516 – $167,824). Up to 17% superannuation and very attractive salary packaging options are available. 

General enquiries can be directed to Prof. Wai-Hong Tham (tham@wehi.edu.au) or Prof Ian Wicks (wicks@wehi.edu.au). 

How to apply 

Please apply by uploading your CV, cover letter and a document addressing the key selection criteria in pdf format.

Click here to apply


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