Career Recruitment Site

For Patients' Peace of Mind
Maximizing the Value of Medicine

Medical Science Liaison MSL 3G Shino Endo

Starting my career as a Medical Science Liaison by utilizing basic research skills

As a student, I was engaged in basic research aimed at developing a method to identify patients who respond well to anticancer drugs and at elucidating the mechanism of resistance to anticancer drugs. The ultimate goal of both research themes was to maximize the effectiveness of anticancer drugs and bring benefits to cancer patients. But I felt frustrated by the difficulty of applying basic research to clinical practice and by the fact that I had never had the experience of directly listening to the voice of doctors and patients who actually use anticancer drugs.

The ability to experience the connection between research and clinical practice and the ability to make use of what I had learned up to that point were the key factors in choosing my place of employment. When I thought about how I wanted to realize my core aims, I found a position as a medical science liaison where I could discuss medical needs and optimal treatment with specialists from a scientific perspective.

When I began my job search, I was vaguely concerned about how much of my past experience I would be able to utilize and how I could specifically contribute to the company. At the Astellas recruitment interview, the person who interviewed me expressed interest in my strengths and my major, and I was able to visualize myself working as a Medical Science Liaison while utilizing my strengths and scientific background, which is the reason I decided to join Astellas.

Building trust with doctors and sharing information based on scientific perspectives

I am in charge of facilities in the Hokuriku area, Miyagi Prefecture, and Tokyo, and I conduct as many interviews as possible each week to exchange scientific opinions. Prior to the interviews, I read the relevant literature carefully, discuss the content of the interviews with members of the company, and make repeated preparations to provide useful information and exchange scientific opinions within a limited time. After the interview, we analyze and discuss the information obtained from the viewpoint of what kind of data would help patients feel comfortable using the drug and make use of the information in the next interview.
I am a member of the urologic oncology team and am responsible for Enzalutamide and Enfortumab vedotin. The Medical Science Liaison exchanges views on the latest data with experts in the field, identifies unmet medical needs, data gaps and medical insights, and uses this information to create new data necessary for patients to feel more comfortable using their medications. I am working toward the creation of new data necessary for patients to use medicines with greater peace of mind.
I have many opportunities to speak with doctors outside the company in the course of my work. I am in an environment where I can continuously learn how to ask questions and interact with them by attending interviews with senior colleagues and hearing their advice before and after the interviews, which has been a great learning experience.

I actively share with my team members about data related to basic research, making use of my experience as a student. The team is in charge of running study sessions on papers and academic conference data, and we set up a forum about once a month for medical science liaisons to exchange opinions with each other in accordance with the conference and the team's activity plans. The meetings are held with the aim of acquiring knowledge surrounding the products for which they are responsible and to facilitate high-quality exchanges of opinions with doctors. The abstracts cover a wide range of topics, including actual clinical data and basic research data.
I consider my basic knowledge of molecular biology to be one of my strengths, and I am particularly active in introducing basic research data during the reading sessions.

Developing relationships with doctors that benefit the patient

After six months have passed since I joined the company and a doctor has been assigned to my case, I am focusing on building a relationship of trust with the doctor. In addition to knowledge of the area of responsibility, high communication skills are required in order to listen to the doctor's frank opinions and lead to a deep exchange of views. We strive to build a relationship of trust by devising communication methods tailored to each doctor and by focusing on preparing in advance the content of interviews that meet their needs. In the future, we would like to go beyond building trusting relationships to generate new data and collect important information that meets actual clinical needs.

Of all the aspects of the Astellas Way, I am most sympathetic to patient orientation. In science and medicine, I believe it is important to ask the question, "Is this decision or action in the best interest of the patient?” Patient orientation is one aspect of the Astellas Way, but I feel that it is a common and important element in the embodiment of the five Astellas Ways.

The mission of the Medical Science Liaison is to maximize the value of medicines so that more patients can use them with peace of mind. The desire to deliver optimal medical care to patients is my driving force and is shared by doctors and all people engaged in medical care. I will continue to ask myself, "Are my decisions and actions in the best interest of patients?”

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