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Merck Digital Pathology Machine Learning Group Leader in Boston, Massachusetts

Job Description

In order to meet the research needs of our ever-growing discovery and translational science efforts, the Anatomic Pathology group in South San Francisco is building out an internal machine learning focused core of expertise to help drive forward digital pathology research support and biomarker development in oncology and other therapeutic areas. As part of this, we are seeking an experienced machine learning researcher with expertise in digital pathology to help lead this core group, interacting closely with internal pathologists, machine learning experts, pathology bench scientists, statisticians, and IT staff.

This position will require management of a small group of machine learning scientists in applying computer vision, machine learning, and software programming to develop custom computational methods for automating tissue based analyses and interrogating basic biological features and mechanisms of action leverageable for clinical and discovery efforts. The successful candidate will oversee and participate in the deployment of convolutional neural networks in machine learning projects focused on complex feature and pattern recognition, spatial analysis, and other evaluations applied to digitized pathology images. The position requires a high level of comfort with coding (e.g. Python, MATLAB), as well as facility with deep-learning frameworks (e.g. PyTorch) with conversion of custom-coded solutions for use by non-coders. This position is interdisciplinary, sitting at the intersection of pathology, applied computer science, and therapeutic area biology, particularly oncology. An exceptional degree of collaboration is required.

The successful candidate will:

  • Manage a small group of machine learning scientists working in the digital pathology space

  • Develop and automate machine learning based tissue segmentation algorithms to replace manual annotations in image analysis workflows

  • Devise and implement efficient and robust parallel-computing workflows in High Performance Computing systems for large-scale image analysis projects

  • Develop novel spatial evaluation algorithms for interrogation of proximity relationships between tissue constituents

  • Write custom code for algorithm development and model training, converting custom solutions to enable use by non-coders as appropriate

  • Work with images from across different pathology assay types and different disease indications

  • Interact smoothly with pathologists, pathology bench scientists, statisticians, biologists, clinicians, and informatics/IT staff, both internally and externally

  • Serve as a subject matter expert regarding computational aspects of digital pathology projects

  • Present data in team meetings and participate in generation of technical reports in support of regulatory documents as needed

  • Possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills, high levels of creativity and flexibility, a highly collaborative approach, and the ability to direct, motivate and develop a small team of machine learning scientists

This is a remote or hybrid position based on candidate's location and preference.



  • Ph.D. in biology, pathology, immunology, computer science or related field with five (5) or more years of directly relevant experience after completion of training

Required Skills and Experience:

  • Experience with people management

  • In-depth knowledge of image processing, computer vision, and statistical machine learning

  • High proficiency in programming , e.g., Python and MATLAB

  • Familiarity and comfort with digital image analysis, preferably pathology images

Preferred Skills and Experience:

  • Previous work in the pharmaceutical industry

  • High level of comfort with histology/microanatomy

  • Background in oncology and/or immunology

  • Practical knowledge with Perkin Elmer Vectra Polaris platform and HALO image system

We are a research-driven biopharmaceutical company. Our mission is built on the simple premise that if we “follow the science” that great medicines can make a significant impact to our world. We believe that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to world-class science can succeed by inventing medicine and vaccine innovations that make a difference for patients across the globe.

Who we are …

We are known as Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, New Jersey, USA in the United States and Canada and MSD everywhere else. For more than a century, we have been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Today, our company continues to be at the forefront of research to deliver innovative health solutions and advance the prevention and treatment of diseases that threaten people and animals around the world.

What we look for …

Imagine getting up in the morning for a job as important as helping to save and improve lives around the world. Here, you have that opportunity. You can put your empathy, creativity, digital mastery, or scientific genius to work in collaboration with a diverse group of colleagues who pursue and bring hope to countless people who are battling some of the most challenging diseases of our time. Our team is constantly evolving, so if you are among the intellectually curious, join us—and start making your impact today.


In accordance with Managers' Policy - Job Posting and Employee Placement, all employees subject to this policy are required to have a minimum of twelve (12) months of service in current position prior to applying for open positions.

If you have been offered a separation benefits package, but have not yet reached your separation date and are offered a position within the salary and geographical parameters as set forth in the Summary Plan Description (SPD) of your separation package, then you are no longer eligible for your separation benefits package. To discuss in more detail, please contact your HRBP or Talent Acquisition Advisor.

Residents of Colorado

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For positions located in the United States and Puerto Rico – Subject to applicable law, all new hires (including internal transfers) must demonstrate that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or that they qualify for a medical or religious exemption to this vaccination requirement. New hires (including internal transfers) to a position that, as determined by the Company, requires routine collaboration with external stakeholders (such as roles in health services or customer-facing commercial or research-based roles) (“Customer-Facing Role”) who are not vaccinated must qualify for a medical or religious exemption and be in a position that the Company determines can accommodate unvaccinated employees without causing an undue burden to business operations. If, following dialog with the candidate as appropriate, it is determined that the candidate either a) does not qualify for a religious or medical exemption or, b) for candidates applying for Customer-Facing roles, it is determined that allowing the candidate to work without vaccination would cause an undue burden to the Company, the candidate will be ineligible for hire or transfer, or any offer of employment or transfer (if applicable) will be revoked. Please note that notwithstanding the approval of any reasonable accommodation, the Company reserves the right to monitor, modify, or revoke any such accommodation if it is determined, following dialog with the employee, that the accommodation is no longer effective or results in an undue burden to the Company.

Current Employees apply HERE ($1533/rel-task/3001$14.htmld)

Current Contingent Workers apply HERE ($4020.htmld)

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

Our company is committed to inclusion, ensuring that candidates can engage in a hiring process that exhibits their true capabilities. Please click here ( if you need an accommodation during the application or hiring process.

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We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

Residents of Colorado:

Click here ( to request this role’s pay range.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully

Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme LLC, Rahway, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

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Requisition ID: R204767