Job title: Head of Research and Product Development

Company: Vetsina Animal Diagnostics Ltd

Line manager: CEO

Nature of Employment: Full-Time Contract

Vetsina Animal Diagnostics Ltd is a new joint venture, partnering DestiNA Genomics with Roslin Technologies. Our vision is to develop and market novel diagnostic assays based on miRNA detection to the veterinary and animal health industries.

DestiNA Genomics was formed to commercialise a revolutionary chemical-based system for detecting nucleic acids and single nucleotide polymorphisms, for development of simple, fast, accurate and cost- effective products for PCR-free detection of miRNAs in human medicine.

Roslin Technologies is a ‘New Technology Commercialisation Company’ based at Easter Bush Campus, at the centre of the largest concentration of animal science expertise in Europe. The company was created to develop commercial opportunities from the research, know-how, capabilities and intellectual property of The Roslin Institute and the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

Vetsina will embark on an ambitious programme to develop several ‘proof of concept’ tests, initially in metabolic disease, oncology and infectious diseases. Completion of this first phase will be followed by rapid scale up of commercial development. We are currently seeking high calibre individuals to join the team and to start working in collaboration with our partners at DestiNA Genomics, the University of Edinburgh and others. This new role is a key strategic appointment in the future focus and success of Vetsina Animal Diagnostics.

Key Roles and Responsibilities:

Reporting to the CEO, the Head of R&D will oversee all scientific and veterinary science functions in the company, including:

  • Work with the CEO and other executives to develop a scientific strategy for the company
  • Leadership of Scientific Advisory Board, scouting and evaluating new leads, monitoring industry trends etc.
  • Collaborate with DestiNA to understand and master required scientific and technical skills
  • Design and management of development projects, including new assays, pilot studies and translational/comparative projects
  • Representing the company at conferences and be the spokesperson for the company on and off campus
  • Supervision of R&D team colleagues
  • Daily management of the on-site team and environment
  • Implementation and supervision of QA/QC schemes
  • Management of the R&D budget

The CSO will be an integral part to the company’s leadership team.

Requirements & Experience
  • PhD in veterinary medicine/science or molecular diagnostics
  • Related experience at a senior level in business or academia, with evidence of leadership skills
  • Significant experience in building and running an industry-leading function or business unit
  • Experience in designing and executing scientific projects and studies
  • Knowledge of systems for handling biological samples
  • Agility, adaptability and ability to understand new concepts
  • Proven success at grant writing
  • Ability to build and manage trusted relationships at senior levels within and outside the company
  • Excellent influencing skills (at various levels within the organisation) with the ability to collaborate across boundaries and cultures
  • Comfortable working in a dynamic, high intensity but flexible and often virtual working environment
  • Your technical strategy must align with your company’s overall business objectives; as CSO, you will need both scientific skill and good business sense to fulfil this responsibility successfully
Personal Attributes
  • A first class communicator and presenter with skills honed at executive level
  • Action orientated with the ability, gravitas and acumen to influence outcomes and create a positive environment
  • Strategic thinker with understanding of planning, research development, analysis, evaluation and creativity
  • Exceptional project management and problem solving skills: attention to detail, flexibility, and ability to collaborate with others and to work in a fast-paced environment
  • An intelligent and engaging leader who is an enlightened and non-linear thinker

This is a full-time position, based in Vetsina’s laboratories and offices at the Roslin Innovation Centre, Easter Bush Campus. A flexible approach to working is expected, and there is some requirement for travel. Legal right to work in the UK is a requirement.

The successful candidate will have the opportunity to be part of a dynamic, growing organisation. This senior position will attract a competitive salary, pension and an opportunity to participate in the company’s share scheme in the future.

Informal enquiries to Dr. Simon Wheeler (