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Data Sciences & AI Graduate Programme at AstraZeneca

Posted 2 weeks ago

Imagine turning your passion for Data Science, Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) into insights, predictions and actions that could help develop medicines that change lives. Pushing the frontiers of innovation. Collaborating with some of the finest minds in their fields. Working in an environment that stimulates your curiosity, and enables you to develop your expertise and reach your potential.

AstraZeneca is a global, science led biopharmaceutical business and our innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. AI, including deep learning (computer algorithms inspired by biological neural networks), is revolutionising all stages of drug discovery and development from drug design to pivotal clinical trials and beyond. At AstraZeneca, we are deploying AI across the drug discovery phases to discover new connections between data, provide novel insights, accelerate scientific understanding, and increase productivity.  For example, we are using AI to help design and synthesise new drug molecules, analyse and interpret the vast amount of data from imaging studies, and for biomarker research to match the right drug to the right patient. In our clinical trials, AI is also enabling us to continuously monitor incoming safety data and alert our scientists to safety signals that need attention.

As a Data Scientist and AI Graduate in the IMED Biotech Unit you will help our scientists make their data ‘AI-ready’, and integrate the latest AI advances into all our drug discovery programmes.  Together we will harness the power of our data and AI to deliver life-changing medicines to patients worldwide.

What does the programme involve?  

Your two-year programme begins with an introduction to drug discovery, and how we harness the potential of Data Science, ML and AI. You’ll then have three eight-month placements where you’ll apply your developing skills and experience to help us overcome challenges in some of our active research projects.

Your placements will help you develop your technical skills and industry knowledge, and our Global Graduate Development Programme will help you develop the interpersonal skills necessary to influence the agenda and achieve success at workshop style coaching sessions led by expert trainers. 

You’ll travel to Gothenburg (Sweden), Boston (US) and Cambridge (UK) for the three modules which make up the Global Graduate Development Programme. Each module lasts a week, and all are designed and led by external experts who are specialist in leadership development.  

Placements could involve…  

  • Working with our Data & Analytics Team to identify, assess and recommend the most innovative external partners, and high impact AI technologies. Writing algorithms to support next generation natural language processing, and optimising code to enable powerful predictive models to be used across AstraZeneca.
  • Contributing to challenging projects using advanced ML models to improve drug discovery by generating testable hypotheses about targets, predicting compound properties, automating complex decision-making processes, and turning data into knowledge.
  • Combining innovative de novo molecule design methodologies utilising state-of-the-art AI technologies with chemistry automation to design novel molecules of therapeutic interest.
  • Developing Bayesian machine learning models for predicting the mechanism and probability of drug toxicity in liver, heart, and other organs. Incorporating existing knowledge of causal relationships and toxicity mechanisms into the prediction problem, and applying Bayesian models to account for uncertainty to improve predictions.
  • Applying the latest techniques in AI & ML to preclinical data from drug projects to help detect and understand safety risks and guide the development of new medicines. Exciting work which could also help us refine, reduce and replace animal experiments.
  • Working with our Quantitative Clinical Pharmacology team to optimise clinical development programs using Bayesian statistic and ML modelling.
  • Applying AI to integrated electronic health records and genomic data to redefine cancers and help improve patient outcomes.

As a Data Sciences and AI Graduate in the IMED Biotech Unit you’ll discover how we’re pioneering more open innovation, and actively sharing knowledge and ideas to make the next scientific breakthrough.

Qualifications and Skills Required:  

  • Highly numerate with a strong Maths, Physics, Statistics or Computer Science focussed Bachelors or Masters level qualification gained in 2018 or 2019.
  • A postgraduate qualification in Data Science, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Computational Biology, Computational Chemistry, Bioinformatics or Cheminformatics would be advantageous, but is not essential.
  • Innovative thinking, with enthusiasm, energy and drive.
  • Open-minded, and ready to embrace new ideas and different perspectives.
  • Strong critical thinking, planning, organisational and time management skills.
  • Ability to work as part of a collaborative team that focuses unequivocally on patient needs.

Apply via the "apply now" button.

Application Deadline: 20th January (US), 27th January (UK) and 24th February (Sweden) 2019.

Assessment Centres: 21st March (US) & 26th April (combined UK & Sweden) 2019 Expected Start: September 2019 (US, UK & Sweden)

About the IMED Biotech Unit: The IMED Biotech Unit is one of two global research and early development arms of AstraZeneca, focusing on advancing small molecules, oligonucleotides and other emerging technologies and drug discovery platforms. The Biotech Unit conducts innovative discovery research and early-stage development from initial target selection to Phase II trial completion. Find out more: 

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