A Day in the Life of a Lundbeck Biologics Formulation Scientist

Greg Barnett did not envision being part of the life science industry when he graduated from Lehigh University with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering.

“I didn’t think I would go into the pharmaceutical area,” he said. “At the time, I didn’t fully understand the space. I thought it was just chemicals and medication manufacturing.”

The chance to have an impact on people’s daily lives is what ultimately drew him into the space. “It’s super interesting from a science perspective, because these new therapies are different than what has ever been done before. To know that I’m developing something with potential to offer important benefits for patients is what gets me excited for this work,” he said.

Today, Barnett is Director of Formulation Development at Lundbeck in Bothell, Washington. At Lundbeck, Barnett and his team are responsible for advancing innovative treatments for people living with psychiatric and neurological diseases. Specifically, they are charged with making Lundbeck’s therapies as stable as possible, so they are delivered to patients at the highest quality and purity, while also being stored at temperatures that are convenient for patients and healthcare providers.

6:30 AM: Collaborating with Colleagues Across the Globe

Because Lundbeck is a global company based in Copenhagen, Denmark, Barnett speaks with his European colleagues daily. On a typical morning, he grabs a cup of coffee and logs onto Microsoft Teams at around 6:30 AM PT to collaborate on projects with individuals in places like Denmark, Asia, and the East Coast of the U.S.

“The great thing about a global organization like Lundbeck is that when you’re working in different time zones, there’s always somebody that’s thinking about the problem we’re trying to solve, which is typically around how to make the drug formulations more stable. When I wake up in the morning, the team in Europe is almost at the end of their day and has been working all day long. And then I pick up where they left off.”

“We’re constantly working to innovate in neuroscience. And I think that’s where the way you work, being collaborative and creating an open, transparent culture is super important.”

10:00 AM: In the Lab

After his early morning meetings, Barnett takes a quick break to have breakfast, take a walk, or go exercise. Then, he heads into the office. After grabbing another cup of coffee, he goes into the lab to check in with his team of research associates and senior scientists on the status of current experiments and to address any challenges they want to talk through.

Speaking about Lundbeck’s culture, Barnett commented, “I think that’s one of the advantages that we have as a mid-size company. We can work quickly, make decisions, and be super collaborative.”

This collaborative spirit extends to the larger life science ecosystem in Seattle as well, given the abundance of biotech companies in the area. The rich talent pool here is close-knit, with many colleagues having worked at other companies nearby, which fosters a community environment that spans organizations.

12:30 PM: Connecting with the Lundbeck Community    

Outside of the day-to-day work, employees at Lundbeck’s Bothell office enjoy weekly lunches in a town hall setting, where organizational updates are shared, and a company speaker is invited to present what they’re working on to the larger group. This time allows for everyone to come together, enjoy themselves, and talk to people they may not work closely with.

6:00 PM: Evenings Enjoying the PNW

After the workday is done, Barnett can frequently be found playing tennis at a nearby court, especially during Seattle’s hallmark summer, where the weather is warm and the sun doesn’t set until 10:00 PM.

Having lived and worked on the East Coast and in California, Barnett has a unique perspective on Pacific Northwest life. Aside from the amazing national parks and hiking trails, he enjoys the laid-back culture and the approachability of the people here who he says are genuinely caring, welcoming, and interested in helping.

“If you’re looking for an alternative to more traditional life science hubs like California and New Jersey, I think the Pacific Northwest has a lot to offer. It’s amazing to see how the tech and biotech industries here continue to grow and be dynamic. There are so many opportunities to make an impact.”

Interested in joining Barnett and setting off on your own adventure in the PNW? See current job openings at Lundbeck in Bothell here.

Sponsored by Life Science Washington and Lundbeck