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Principal Medicinal Chemist (permanent), Cambridge, UK

Mission Therapeutics is an early-stage drug development company targeting the ubiquitin pathway for the treatment of kidney disease, neurodegenerative disease, rare mitochondrial diseases and fibrosis.  The Company has built a leading platform for the discovery and development of first-in-class, small molecule drugs that selectively target deubiquitylating enzymes (DUBs) – an emerging drug class that is attracting significant commercial interest in the area of protein homeostasis.

We are looking for a talented and experienced medicinal chemist to join our team in Cambridge, UK where we are ideally situated in a fantastic new facility on the Babraham Research Campus at the heart of Europe’s largest biotechnology cluster.


You will be responsible for the medicinal chemistry of one or more projects within a fast-paced, semi virtual research organisation.  You will combine extensive hit seeking experience with screening data from many sources, to iteratively design compounds which progress early projects (in the hit/lead phases) towards candidate nomination.


You will remotely direct the synthesis of compounds using CRO teams. You will analyse in-house screening data to identify the best hits, whilst applying sound medicinal chemistry design skills to determine the optimisation potential of hits as quickly as possible by addressing key issues within the fewest synthetically tractable analogues. For more advanced series you will triage candidate contenders by coordinating pre-nomination profiling, complete with associated scale-up to supply in vivo studies and preclinical development activities.


Qualifications and Experience


  • A PhD in synthetic organic chemistry
  • >5 years industry experience as a medicinal chemist
  • A track record of playing key roles in the design of small molecule candidate drugs
  • Experience of leading chemistry teams in both hit-to-lead and lead-to-candidate phases across a range of projects (ideally including enzyme projects)
  • Extensive experience of remotely managing large CRO teams of more than 6 synthetic chemists


Key Skills and Abilities


  • The ability to design creative and novel medicinal chemistry solutions whilst ensuring drug-likeness is not compromised
  • A thorough knowledge of synthetic methodology and reaction mechanisms
  • The ability to analyse large amounts of data to identify exploitable SAR
  • A thorough appreciation of all mainstream medicinal chemistry design principles and techniques (including Ro5, efficiency parameters, structural alerts and SBDD)
  • A working understanding of the fundamentals of screening assays, human PK and safety predictions, IP protection strategy and all other candidate selection criteria
  • Proven ability to work in a global environment and collaborate with diverse partners from big pharma through to small biotech




We offer a competitive salary along with a contributory pension scheme and other excellent benefits.

The closing date for applications is 11th October 2021.

In order to comply with UK employment legislation, all applicants for positions at Mission must have the right to work in the UK.  If a job offer is made, you will be required to provide evidence of your right to work in the UK before you commence employment with Mission.


No agencies, thank you.