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Senior Principal Scientist - Chemical Biology Lead

Commensurate with education and experience
Closing date
Feb 1, 2023

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Physical Sciences, Chemistry
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type
All Industry
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At LifeArc, we want to hear from people who are as passionate as we are about making life science life changing that can improve patients’ lives. 

A bit about the role:

Working within the new Translational Therapeutic Platforms function, an experienced and dynamic small molecule leader will lead, support and focus the Chemical Biology Team. This role will require both innovation and delivery in the chemical biology space, in support of LifeArc’s Science projects for individual Translational Challenges and/or the wider OneScience portfolio.  

Building on LifeArc’s established small molecule capabilities, the new leader will bring additional chemical biology experience as the group refocuses its small molecule strategy.

This is a strategic leadership role that will impact the current and future LifeArc Science project portfolio for Translational Challenges through small molecules approaches, and wider portfolio through creating an innovative culture that allows free-thinking that explores what is and could be possible to maximise our impact for the benefit of patients.   

This role is for a dynamic and ‘science focused leader’ to join LifeArc lead a team in a changing organisation that has a unique ability to impact the lives of patients.  The candidate will coach and mentor a team, propose improvement and innovation of the platform (both internally and externally) and integrate the team into projects and challenges to provide bespoke chemical biology solutions across LifeArc.


Key accountabilities:

  • Evolves the Chemical Biology team to refocus small molecule drug discovery in LifeArc
  • Directs innovative chemical biology (e.g., Protein Degradation, ADCs) to deliver proprietary solutions for future drug discovery
  • More broadly, applies established medicinal chemistry approaches for small molecule discovery (e.g., fragment and diversity screening)
  • Oversees matrix working with scientific project teams (and the wider portfolio) in order to provide bespoke small molecule chemistry solutions for projects across the LifeArc portfolio
  • Provides strategic guidance, knowledge and direction to own team and teams across the organization to support the OneScience approach
  • Looks for opportunities across LifeArc to where chemical biology can provide bespoke solutions to disease and indication challenges
  • Uses deep knowledge and experience in chemical biology to scan the external landscape of scientific and technical capabilities with a view to identifying and bringing in house new ‘cutting edge’ capabilities
  • Drives a culture of innovation across LifeArc, challenging approaches and the status quo, looking for new ways of working and opportunities that will advance our Science and Translational Challenges
  • Applies proven people leadership and people development skills to coach, mentor and develop the Chemical Biology team of scientists
  • Identifies and presents project proposals to senior stakeholders, balancing the portfolio in line with Translational needs and impact
  • Collaborates with the external scientific community, acting as an ambassador for LifeArc promoting, creating and maintaining strategic partnerships
  • Contributes to project planning and resourcing
  • Drives a delivery and commercial mindset, where we deliver against our promises and commitments
  • Critically sets and reviews project outcomes, endorsing or challenging as appropriate to ensure the portfolio is ultimately successful 
  • Shares knowledge of and contributes to current scientific literature and developments within area of expertise
  • Applies extensive scientific knowledge to significant and critical business issues that address future concepts and services that impact on the success of the organisation


About you:

Education & experience required: 

  • Educated to BSc/MSc/PhD or equivalent
  • Experience and track record in the chemical biology field, with exemplification in areas such as protein degradation or ADC development
  • Broad medicinal chemistry skillset with a clear understanding of quality in hits, leads and preclinical candidates
  • Experience and track record of successful team management
  • Extensive scientific or post-doctoral experience
  • Track record of publications or patents that demonstrate the creation of innovative novel solutions to complex problems
  • Experience managing and resourcing multiple projects
  • Experience of working in a matrix organisation


Skills & abilities:

  • Able to thrive in an environment that is ambiguous, which also allows for free-thinking and innovation
  • Resilient in the face of unfavourable outcomes.
  • Ability to foster a high-functioning and collaborative team
  • Ability to coach, mentor and develop individuals in the team and wider organisation
  • Strong planning and attention to detail
  • Intellectual curiosity
  • Highly collaborative with internal and external stakeholders
  • Critical and analytical thinker, strong problem solver
  • Organised and meticulous
  • Detail orientated and accurate
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Ability to accurately follow directions
  • Able to communicate complex information - both verbal and written
  • Ability to influence and persuade others

About us: 

At LifeArc, our ambition is to make life science life changing. We do this by advancing scientific discoveries beyond the lab, faster, so that they can shape the next generation of diagnostics, treatments, and cures.  

Working at the cutting edge of translational science and as the early-stage translation specialists, we progress scientific discoveries on their journey to becoming a medicine, diagnostic or intervention that can improve patients’ lives. Our work begins by seeking out innovative science, then helping to develop this to a point where there is a clinical and commercial pathway for others to invest the time and money to take it further forward.  

What we can offer you: 

Salary will be determined by qualifications and experience along with other exceptional benefits. Because we understand everyone has different requirements, our flexible benefits allow you to choose those which are important to you. Our pension scheme offers employer contributions of up to 12%, private health insurance, and annual leave of 31 days PLUS bank holidays.  

Join us, and you’ll have the scope to be creative and take measured risks. You’ll be rewarded for your curiosity, for working as one team, and for learning fast. And you’ll have everything you need to be your best every day.  

Don’t meet every single requirement? Studies have shown that women and people from minority ethnic backgrounds, for example, are less likely to apply to jobs unless they meet every single qualification. At LifeArc we are dedicated in building a diverse, inclusive, and authentic workplace, so whatever your background or lived experience, if you’re excited about this role but your experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. Our top priority is finding the best candidate and you may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.  

We all have potential. At LifeArc, you’ll discover what you can really do with it.


For the right candidate, we will consider relocation and visa sponsorship.



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