Investigator, ELT chemistry

Cambridge, MA
August 19 2020
Organization Type
We are currently looking for a highly motivated organic chemist to join our world leading Encoded Library Technologies (ELT) drug discovery platform in Cambridge, MA. Our group partners with program teams across GSK's research units to deliver high quality small molecules, spanning tool compound generation, hit confirmation, and SAR development. The successful applicant will become fluent in these areas of chemistry while working as part of a highly productive team to synthesize developable drug molecules based on our selection results. ELT Chemistry plays a key role in developing and evolving increasingly efficient strategies to accelerate the critical stages of hit identification and hit-to-lead chemistry, which in turn will transition higher quality molecules into lead optimization.

A successful candidate has a basic expertise in synthetic chemistry and modern synthetic methods with the agility to learn methods relevant to the group. The role will challenge the successful applicant to implement workflows in medicinal chemistry, data analytics and visualization, compound design and high throughput chemistry. The chemist will work to support GSK's small molecule portfolio and investment that was publicly disclosed in 2018 with an exclusive multi-year collaboration with 23andMe, giving GSK access to novel genetically-associated targets with a greater likelihood to translate to human disease, ultimately allowing GSK to bring therapies to patients so they can do more, feel better, and live longer.

Basic qualifications
  • Master's degree with 5 years of pharmaceutical industry experience or Ph.D. (or equivalent experience) in Organic Chemistry, Synthetic Methodology Development, Synthetic Organic Chemistry or Medicinal Chemistry
  • Experience with synthetic chemistry; knowledgeable in the application of new synthetic methodology and execution of multi-step syntheses and demonstrated problem-solving abilities

Preferred qualifications

  • Postdoctoral experience and/or 1-5 years industrial experience
  • Knowledge of contemporary synthetic methodologies (including but not limited to catalysis, biocatalysis, photoredox, and electrochemistry)
  • Demonstrated implementation of high throughput experimentation, parallel synthesis, or automation
  • Data analytics or cheminformatics experience as applied to experimental arrays
  • Familiarity of encoded library synthesis methods
  • Highly organized with strong attention to detail and a focus on quality results
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Strong record of peer-reviewed publications, patents, and/or presentations

Values and Expectations

  • Proactive and self-motivated
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • High learning agility with curiosity to learn and adopt new technologies
  • Track record of working effectively in a team environment
  • Self-aware; seeks ways to improve personal and scientific skills
  • An ability to work and communicate with other scientific disciplines to drive results.

Key responsibilities may include
  • Independently plan and implement efficient synthetic routes to molecules of interest, applying state of the art purification and characterization techniques for hit confirmation and hit to lead SAR generation.
  • Develop new synthetic methods as needed, and help identify and implement innovative technologies.
  • Work effectively with collaborators in Computational Chemistry, Medicinal Chemistry, and Molecular Biology to evolve a platform to accelerate hit identification and hit-to-lead chemistry in order to shorten timelines to candidate selection.
  • Independently author peer reviewed scientific papers, internal / external presentations and technical reports.
  • Represent the team to present research internally to stakeholders and management.
  • Maintain a safe working environment.
  • Share in responsibilities to support general lab functions.
  • Maintain accurate records as required by GlaxoSmithKline policies and ensure that GSK Intellectual Property is protected.


GlaxoSmithKline is a world leading research-based pharmaceutical company that combines both individual talent and technical resources to create a platform for the delivery of strong growth in a rapidly changing healthcare market. G laxoSmithKline is recognized internationally for its innovative approach to drug discovery and development. Our success is built on the collaboration of multi-disciplinary teams of scientists sharing their ideas and expertise. We are seeking proactive chemists to join us in our mission to improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better, and live longer.

Why You

Success in GSK thrives on strong interpersonal skills and practical chemistry skills combined with a curious, inquisitive nature and a passion for science. You are equally passionate about developing yourself, developing new scientific methodologies, pushing the limits of innovation, and learning something new every day. You are an excellent team player, able to work with others either in the lab or in the office as well as within cross-functional teams. You are independent and able to plan and execute your own workload and deliver results. Your science is conducted with integrity, safety, and the highest standards. You pride yourself in your chemistry and enjoy science as much as we do.

Where We Are

The ELT Chemistry group is located at our site in Cambridge, Massachusetts which is home to approximately 85 R&D staff. The focused nature of the group, coupled with the small size of the site, offers chemists at this location the feel of a biotech company with the resources that come with being part of a larger organization. Conveniently located on the MBTA Red line, the Cambridge site finds itself in close proximity to 8 research universities, numerous colleges and hospitals, and over 1000 biotechnology companies ranging from start-ups to big pharma. Described as the “center of the nation's biotechnology industry”, Cambridge provides countless opportunities to attend lectures and interact with external colleagues, fueling an exciting atmosphere of scientific discovery and collaboration.

For further information on DNA-Encoded Libraries, see the following references :

Clark et al. Design, Synthesis and Selection of DNA-Encoded Small-Molecule Libraries. Nat. Chem. Biol. 2009, 5 , 647-654.

Arico-Muendel. From haystack to needle: finding value with DNA encoded library technology at GSK. MedChemComm 2016, 7 , 1898-1909. DOI:10.1039/c6md00341A

Machutta & Kollmann et al. Prioritizing multiple therapeutic targets in parallel using automated DNA-encoded library screening. Nat. Commun . 2017, 8 , 16081. DOI:10.1038/ncomms16081

Phelan et al. Open-Air Alkylation Reactions in Photoredox-Catalyzed DNA-Encoded Library Synthesis. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019, 141, 8, 3723-3732. DOI: 10.1021/jacs.9b00669


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