Researcher (Head of Unit) in therapeutic antibody discovery


Application deadline

November 15, 2021

Researcher (Head of Unit) in therapeutic antibody discovery

School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health at KTH

The Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab, ) is Sweden´s national infrastructure for molecular bioscience, with a mission to support academic research and drug development. The centre combines advanced technical know-how and state-of-the-art equipment with a broad knowledge in translational medicine, e.g. through the SciLifeLab Drug Discovery & Development platform (SciLifeLab DDD, The SciLifeLab DDD platform is composed of several units with unique competencies related to drug discovery and development processes for both biologics and small molecules. These units are physically located in Stockholm, Uppsala, Gothenburg, and Lund and staffed by researchers employed at local universities. Typically, drug development projects run by the SciLifeLab DDD platform stem from academic basic science projects, in which opportunities to intervene with disease processes with either biologics, oligonucleotides, or small molecules have been identified and perceived to have commercial potential. A steering group prioritizes which projects receive support from the SciLifeLab DDD platform.

The Department of Protein Science, School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (CBH School) at KTH, now look to recruit a new Head of Unit for its Human Antibody Therapeutics (HAT) unit at SciLifeLab DDD in Stockholm.

The Human Antibody Therapeutics (HAT) unit at SciLifeLab DDD is an established and high-performing unit with a staff of six senior researchers, scientifically supported by three platform scientific directors (professor level). The unit has laboratories at both SciLifeLab campus in Stockholm, and at Medicon Village in Lund. The unit´s main responsibility is to drive the SciLifeLab DDD antibody drug discovery programs in collaboration with other competencies from the whole SciLifeLab DDD infrastructure (approx. 45 employees) as well as academic principal investigators (PIs). An essential component for this work is several in-house developed phage-display human antibody libraries with proven ability to deliver high-affinity binders to targets of interest for further development into therapeutic antibody candidates. The unit is also responsible for other in vitro selection-based methods such as DNA-encoded chemical libraries for the discovery of small molecule drug candidates.

As head of the human antibody therapeutics unit you will be responsible for the planning of daily activities and be accountable for project delivery on time. The unit head will be involved in the design and planning of antibody selection from large combinatorial libraries, characterization and evolution of antibody fragments, and antibody engineering, as well as to drive methodology and tools development projects.

What we offer

  • A position at an internationally leading and highly cross-disciplinary infrastructure with proven track-record of delivering pharmaceutical candidates from academic research ideas.
  • Engaged and ambitious colleagues along with a creative, international and dynamic working environment.
  • Work in Stockholm , a metropolitan area with a rich social- and cultural life, as well as competitive biomedical science and in close proximity to nature.
  • Help to relocate and be settled in Sweden and at KTH
    Add your own/items ideas



  • A doctoral degree, or equivalent, in the biotechnology or molecular biology area, and prior experience from working in the biotech/pharmaceutical industry or relevant academic research settings.
  • Previous experience of leadership roles in an academic or industrial setting
  • Great emphasis will be placed on verified personal competence concerning the ability to organize and lead both staff and projects, flexibly manage multiple collaborative projects, and communicate with external stakeholders.
  • Importantly, you are a highly motivated scientist with the ability to work well in a fast-paced multidisciplinary environment and have a distinct quality- and results-focus.
  • Great emphasis will be placed on verified personal competence concerning the ability to organize and lead both staff and projects, flexibly manage multiple collaborative projects, and communicate with external stakeholders.
  • You are motivated to fully engage in research formally owned by others.      

Preferred qualifications

  • Experience in protein engineering, preferably antibody engineering, protein library technologies and protein characterization (affinity, specificity, etc.).
  • Experience from establishing alternative selection-based hit finding strategies and/or alternative biological therapeutic modalities, e.g. bifunctional antibodies, antibody drug conjugates (ADCs), nanobodies, etc. that complement the phage-display technology of human antibodies that is established at the facility.
  • Experience from the ongoing data-driven paradigm shift in life sciences, in particular advances in computational capabilities, AI, machine learning and similar technologies, will be meriting as we anticipate an increased impact of such methods for analyses and predictions of structure/function of proteins and molecular interactions in the years to come
  • Experience from an industrial drug discovery setting is seen as advantageous but not a requirement.
  • You have a good research expertise, collaborative abilities and organizational skills with a high degree of independence. 
  • You also have pedagogical skills and ability to inform about research and development work including excellent writing and communication skills.
  • You have the ability to work towards research results being utilised in practice.
  • Experience of developing and leading activities and staff and knowledge of diversity and equal opportunity issues, with specific focus on gender equality are considered a merit. 
  • To be successful in this role you need to have proven ability to combine technical expertise, organizational and people management skills, with a collaborative and “can do” attitude.

    Great emphasis will be placed on personal competency.

You will find contact information to trade union representatives at


Log into KTH’s recruitment system in order to apply to this position. You are responsible to ensure that your application is complete according to the instructions in the ad.

The application must include:

  • Personal letter and CV including relevant professional experience and knowledge.

Your complete application must be received by KTH no later than the last day of application, midnight CET/CEST (Central European Time/Central European Summer Time).

About the employment

The employment is valid until further notice (permanent post) according to agreement.
The employment begins with a six-month probationary period

Other information

Type of employmentPermanent position
Contract typeFull time
First day of employmentThe employment is valid until further notice (permanent post) according to agreement.
SalaryMonthly salary
Number of positions1
Working hours100%
CountyStockholms län
Reference numberC-2021-1437
ContactAnders Olsson, 070-5585882
Cecilia Williams, 08 790 98 91
Per Arvidsson, 0852481398
Last application date15.Nov.2021 11:59 PM CET

Last updated: 2021-10-25

Content Responsible: David Gotthold(