Chief, Predictive Toxicology Branch (PTB)

Job Summary

NIEHS is seeking a dynamic, highly motivated scientist to serve as Chief of the Predictive Toxicology Branch (PTB) in the Division of the National Toxicology Program (DNTP) at NIEHS. The mission of the DNTP is to evaluate environmental substances of public health concern by developing and applying tools of modern toxicology and molecular biology.  The DNTP provides critical data for regulatory and non-regulatory stakeholder decision making to protect human health using rodent studies, alternative in vivo model systems, in vitro high-throughput screens and/or computational approaches to gauge the potential of thousands of substances to perturb biological targets and pathways.

The scientific goals of the DNTP are achieved through a distinct and highly cooperative and integrated team science operational model whereby scientific staff across multiple branches in the DNTP assemble into interdisciplinary project teams and utilize centrally-managed shared resources, in contrast to the traditional NIH principal investigator-led research group model.  The majority of research is carried out through use of external research and development contracts together with a limited amount of onsite intramural laboratory research capability.  The governance of projects that use DNTP resources are centrally approved by management.

A key component of the DNTP efforts to advance the science of toxicology is the Predictive Toxicology Branch (PTB). The PTB mission is to:

  • Develop, evaluate, and apply new approaches and screening methods for characterizing the biological effects of agents of public health concern
  • Develop and communicate best practices to integrate these approaches into DNTP and the broader toxicological community to protect public health
  • Serve as a scientific resource in support of the DNTP and the toxicological community

In order to accomplish this mission, the goals of the PTB include to:

  • Develop improved computational compound characterization approaches
  • Develop medium- and high-throughput screening assays for the rapid detection of biological activities of significance to humans
  • Develop assays and approaches to understand the genetic and epigenetic bases for differences in susceptibility, and
  • Develop computational tools and approaches to allow for an integrated assessment of data generated using these screening approaches with findings from traditional toxicology models and human studies

While focusing on these goals to advance toxicology in the 21st century, the PTB also provides traditional toxicological support to the DNTP testing activities through in vitro and short-term in vivo testing (e.g., genotoxicity testing and short-term targeted toxicogenomic studies), with the goal of developing and implementing improvements to accepted toxicological testing approaches.

The PTB Chief will contribute to leadership of the DNTP by partnering with the Scientific Director and other Branch and Office leadership to provide strategic direction, manage fiscal and workforce resources and to ensure deliberate and timely advancement of the scientific portfolio.  The successful candidate will demonstrate a strong commitment to strategic planning, leadership and workforce development. Our preference would be for the branch chief to reside in the Research Triangle Park to be available for personally engaging and mentoring staff and for building relationships with the DNTP leadership and others in the DNTP/NIEHS, with the option to telework as needed.

The NIH is the premier biomedical research center for the world. Its 27 institutes and centers employ more than 21,000 employees doing a vast array of jobs, all supporting efforts for a healthy nation. For information about the NIH mission, goals and institutes and centers.


Required Qualifications

The ideal candidate for this position will have a research-based professional degree (Ph.D., M.D., Pharm.D., or D.V.M.) in the life sciences, with experience in in vitro molecular and cellular biological model systems, high-throughput screening approaches and the application of genomic approaches to the study of environmental effects on human health. The successful candidate must demonstrate the strategic and visionary leadership for identifying and matching new scientific technologies with the needs of the DNTP, while also understanding the limitations of data generated through these new approaches for public health decision-making.

Preferred Qualifications

The successful applicant will be an innovative thinker, possess a strong foundational scientific knowledge in an area of toxicology, and demonstrate a working knowledge of genomics, molecular biology, computational biology, genetic toxicology, systems biology, pathology and bioinformatics. The incumbent will be required to devise and implement a strategic framework for developing and evaluating new technological approaches and screening methods to the study of the toxic effects of environmental exposures on human health. The applicant will have demonstrated a commitment to applied and translational research with unique insights into how to build trust in decision-making stakeholders. The successful applicant will be an internationally recognized expert in the development and use of new toxicological methodologies, with demonstrated experience leading diverse scientific research programs, multi-institutional collaborations and international consortia.


This is a federal full-time equivalent position, and a comprehensive benefits package is available. Salary will be commensurate with experience, qualifications and accomplishments. This position is restricted to U.S. citizens.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The NIH NIEHS encourages the application and nomination of traditionally underrepresented groups in the sciences, including women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities. The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy and gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factors. NIH NIEHS will provide reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities as appropriate. If you require reasonable accommodation during any part of the application and hiring process, please notify us.

Standards of Conduct/Financial Disclosure

Foreign Education

Applicants who have completed part or all of their education outside of the United States must provide an evaluation by an accredited organization to ensure its equivalence to education received in accredited educational institutions in the United States. For more information on foreign education verification, visit the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) website. Verification must be received prior to the effective date of the appointment.

Reasonable Accommodation

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