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Principal Scientist, Primary Pharmacology Group

Groton, Connecticut
Closing date
May 18, 2022

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Life Sciences, Pharmacology, Physical Sciences, Chemistry
Position Type
Full Time
Job Type
Staff Scientist
Organization Type
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Pfizer colleagues have many perspectives, many backgrounds, and many strengths, but we share one goal: to improve the lives of patients. Worldwide Research and Development (WRD) combines research units that have deep disease area expertise with partner lines that deliver cutting-edge science, generating an efficient R&D operating model, to discover and develop innovative therapies.

The successful candidate will join a team of ~40 scientists within the Primary Pharmacology Group (PPG) at our Groton, CT campus, focused on the design, development, and execution of in vitro plate-based screening assays supporting hit identification and lead optimization for small molecule drug discovery programs across Pfizer. Disease areas of focus for this position predominantly include Rare Diseases and Oncology. Working collaboratively with project teams he/she/they will use cell models to assist in necessary exploratory work to validate therapeutic hypotheses and will lead the establishment of disease-relevant pharmacology strategies for both target-based and phenotypic programs, ensuring support from project idea to clinical candidate selection.

Applicants should have experience working independently in a laboratory setting and a broad understanding of biology. Previous experience in 4 or more of the following is required: plate-based pharmacology, molecular and cellular biology, biochemistry, enzymology, drug discovery, laboratory automation and data analysis softwares (e.g. ABase, GraphPad Prism, Spotfire). The successful candidate will be excited by working in teams with multiple partners (e.g. Chemistry, Disease Biology, Structural Biology, and CROs) and contributing pharmacology expertise. The candidate should therefore possess strong collaborative and written/verbal communication skills and be adept at building partnerships. Key to the role are an ability to propose creative approaches for complex biological questions and an ability to learn, apply and champion novel concepts and technologies. As such, in addition to technical skills, he/she/they should demonstrate a personal drive, leadership skills, flexibility/resiliency, and a good sense of humor.

At Pfizer, we believe in helping people lead healthier lives - from our customers to our colleagues. We offer a wide array of programs and plans that give our colleagues the flexibility and tools they need to get and stay healthy, both physically and financially. These include competitive compensation, generous medical, vacation and retirement benefits as well as a number of additional programs. The Primary Pharmacology group offers a collegial and supportive environment for colleagues, with a culture encouraging diversity, innovation and ownership of our science. We aim to provide scientific and growth opportunities for personal and career development commensurate with a colleague's goals and experience.

  • We seek an autonomous laboratory scientist to support hit identification and lead optimization for small molecule drugs discovery projects for rare diseases and/or oncology.
  • This scientist will take part in review of external collaboration proposals for the Pfizer's Center for Therapeutic Innovation and work with teams to design in vitro pharmacology strategies for projects accordingly.
  • The scientist will independently design, optimize, and perform in vitro assays to drive lead identification and SAR using a combination of biochemical, target-based, and physiologically relevant assay systems. He/she/they will carry out data analysis as well as review and interpret this data for project teams.
  • This person will be the lead representative from the Primary Pharmacology Group on project teams and may be asked to lead sub-teams on topics of relevance to the department.
  • This scientist will maintain a 'cutting edge' awareness of technical developments and scientific advancements in the field and apply these innovatively to advance internal capabilities. The role includes opportunities to publish when appropriate.
  • This scientist will work across an interdisciplinary team of Research Unit biologists, medicinal chemists, structural biologists and biophysicists, as well as external partners to deliver on the portfolio.

  • PhD or equivalent with 5+ years of experience in biochemistry, cell biology, and/or pharmacology and 2+ years in plate-based pharmacology for drug discovery OR MS with 10+ years of relevant industry experience
  • Demonstrated experience with multiple in vitro assay formats (e.g. FRET, FACS, FP, ELISA, high content imaging, FLIPR, radioligand binding, etc.), including assay development and troubleshooting.
  • Demonstrated experience incell culture and molecular biology including RT-qPCR, transfection, western blotting, and high throughput CETSA techniques
  • Practical experience in laboratory automation and data analysis systems
  • Demonstration of excellent computer, verbal and written communication skills

  • Previous experience in multiple target classes (e.g. GPCRs, transporters, kinases, ion channels, DUBs, RNA, etc) in a drug discovery setting
  • Background in immuno-oncology concepts and approaches
  • Experience in functional genomics screening (siRNA, CRISPR)
  • Knowledge of associated disciplines such as genetics, protein chemistry, biophysical techniques and chemistry
  • Demonstrated ability to forge strong collaborative and inclusive relationships inside and outside organizational walls and across multiple cultures: academic, industrial, and CROs
  • Some experience in mentoring and supervision

  • Sitting, standing, lifting, bending, and walking. Ability to perform practical laboratory bench work and work on a computer (while standing or sitting).
  • Ability to perform mathematical calculations and interpret data.

  • Candidate may periodically be asked to travel to the Pfizer Cambridge, MA and New York, NY sites to meet project team members.
  • Candidate must comply with laboratory safety practices and wear personal protection as required.

Additional Job Information
  • Eligible for Relocation Support
  • Eligible for Employee Referral Bonus


Pfizer requires all U.S. new hires to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to the first date of employment. As required by applicable law, Pfizer will consider requests for Reasonable Accommodations.

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Pfizer reports payments and other transfers of value to health care providers as required by federal and state transparency laws and implementing regulations. These laws and regulations require Pfizer to provide government agencies with information such as a health care provider's name, address and the type of payments or other value received, generally for public disclosure. Subject to further legal review and statutory or regulatory clarification, which Pfizer intends to pursue, reimbursement of recruiting expenses for licensed physicians may constitute a reportable transfer of value under the federal transparency law commonly known as the Sunshine Act. Therefore, if you are a licensed physician who incurs recruiting expenses as a result of interviewing with Pfizer that we pay or reimburse, your name, address and the amount of payments made currently will be reported to the government. If you have questions regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to contact your Talent Acquisition representative.

EEO & Employment Eligibility

Pfizer is committed to equal opportunity in the terms and conditions of employment for all employees and job applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, disability or veteran status. Pfizer also complies with all applicable national, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements of the Immigration and Nationality Act and IRCA. Pfizer is an E-Verify employer.

Research and Development
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