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Soybean Genetic Project Lead, Slater, Iowa

Syngenta Biotechnology, Inc. is seeking a candidate for the position of Soybean Genetic Project Lead, to work in Slater, Iowa.




Soybean Genetic Project Lead


Slater, Iowa

Role Purpose

The purpose of the Soybean Genetic Project Lead's role is to improve the performance of Syngenta's soybean germplasm by developing competitive materials with superior performance, through the development and utilization of genetic technologies in support of soybean breeding.


Participate in germplasm development projects as defined below:

  1. Serve as a core member of breeding project teams with the responsibility of defining genetic based germplasm development strategies. In particular, propose germplasm development applications such as marker-based screening, backcrossing and genomic selection wherever appropriate. Propose and support the evaluation of new genetic approaches that increase the rate of genetic gain.

  2. Manage the implementation of marker based germplasm development work streams, including liaising with genotyping laboratories, phenotyping facilities and nurseries. Conduct both phenotypic and genotypic data analysis. Ensure genetic components of projects occur within budget and timeframe. Report progress and achievements via research reports and technical reviews.

  3. Ensure adequate characterization of germplasm for breeding purposes as well as IP protection.

  4. Maintain tight working relationship with Breeder Project Leads (BPLs) and Trait Project Leads (TPLs).

  5. Participate in and provide relevant genetic information in support of the varietal advancement process.

Lead or participate in trait development projects, together with the quantitative genetics, trait research, bioinformatics, molecular analytics, and any other relevant groups, as defined below:

  1. Lead or participate in the design and planning (preparation and submission of project proposals, choice of materials and methods, milestones and deliverable definition, resource requirements, scheduling) of trait development projects, including engaging into external collaborations where appropriate.

  2. Coordinate or contribute to the execution of trait development projects. In particular, ensure availability of appropriate germplasm (including reference materials) and adequate collection and analysis of phenotypic data (internally or externally), perform appropriate data analysis (QTL mapping, Association Mapping, Regression analysis, etc.), and report on project advancement and outcome with respect to the relevant (Native Trait) stage plan.

  3. Oversee the development and transfer of molecular assays for implementation in genotyping laboratories.

  4. Actively contribute to permanent process improvement for trait development, through awareness of internal and external scientific advances and experience/information sharing across crops and disciplines internally.

  5. Secure intellectual property as appropriate and maintain awareness of intellectual property landscape.

  6. Ensure, for all projects, appropriate technical and business project reviews, as well as portfolio consolidation (including budget and planning insights).

Ensure, with other Genetic Project Leads and similar functions across the company (other crops, other regions), availability and use of most useful and efficient information, tools, protocols and methodologies for molecular breeding.

  1. Maintain awareness of developments and achievements in the area of genetic information, germplasm, tools (discovery, assembly), and methodologies, through monitoring of internal and external activity in the field. In particular, maintain tight relationship with other Genetic Project Leads and Quantitative Genetics team to ensure that same level of expertise and quality of implementation across all areas and projects.

  2. Propose and lead whenever appropriate, the development of new tools, protocols or methodologies.

  3. Ensure availability of most up-to-date genetic information on germplasm and traits. In particular, manage, with other Genetic Project Leads the consolidation of project and discovery information (QTL's, alleles, etc.) generated through trait development or germplasm development projects.

  4. Consolidate and synthesize project implementation experience to provide feed-back allowing continuous improvement in quality and efficiency to genotyping laboratories, phenotyping facilities and nurseries or greenhouses.

  5. Participate in the review of trait or germplasm development projects across crops and functions.

Knowledge, Skills and Experience

Critical Knowledge:
  • A thorough knowledge of breeding theory and quantitative genetics (experimental design, descriptive and test statistics, genetic gain theory, genetic models, linkage disequilibrium, genetic diversity analysis, etc.).
  • A thorough knowledge of statisticals and the use of various software to support statistical analysis such as JMP, SAS or R with experience with ANOVA, regression analysis, model selection, BLUP, BLUE, etc.)
  • A good understanding of genetic mapping tools such as Mapmaker, Joinmap , QTL Cartographer, PlabQTL, etc.
  • Significant experience in the area of Genome Wide Selection/Predictive Breeding and its implementation in a breeding program.
  • Master's or Ph.D. in a relevant field of study.

Critical Skills:
  • Excellent organization, communication and computer skills.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, especially those required to successfully function as part of / lead cross-functional, cross-cultural, multi-location teams.
  • Ability to understand and communicate complex instructions.
  • Capacity to innovate in a focused and product-oriented manner.
  • Interest in and awareness of the market context of the position (both regional and global for the relevant crops).

Critical Experience:
  • Demonstrated project leadership / project management experience (including resource and timeline management) and success in the area of molecular breeding or a related area.

Deadline for Submissions: Past

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