Director/Sr. Director, Medicinal Chemistry

92121, San Diego
Jul 16, 2018
Required Education
Position Type
Full time


The Drug Discovery team at Mirati is responsible for the invention, optimization and characterization of quality small molecules as clinical candidates for Mirati research programs. The Director/Senior Director, Medicinal Chemistry will be a key member of a focused drug discovery leadership team and will lead multiple internal and/or partnered drug discovery programs. The candidate will help define overall drug discovery strategy and pipeline prioritization and will drive medicinal chemistry strategy and new compound design for multiple oncology research programs. The candidate will help manage a contracted chemistry team and may assist in building an internal chemistry lab and team. Responsibilities will also include establishing new drug discovery targets and projects.  Significant experience with structure-based drug design, research project leadership and development candidate delivery is desired.


  • Will manage external resources necessary for project delivery, including synthetic chemistry, ADME, primary biological screening, and crystallography.
  • May have direct reports on the internal Mirati drug discovery team
  • Lead drug discovery project strategy for several projects, delivering high quality development candidates for Mirati research programs
  • Utilize structure- and ligand-based drug discovery techniques and multi-parametric optimization to design novel compounds as therapeutic agents.
  • Establish intellectual property that advances Mirati research projects
  • Manage a team of contracted chemists to deliver high-quality compounds that advance the Mirati research portfolio.
  • May lead drug discovery collaborations, partnerships and/or alliances.
  • Identify, establish and lead partnerships with external service providers focused on the synthesis, characterization and selection of high-quality compounds.
  • Participate in nominating new drug targets and establishing new drug discovery programs
  • Interact effectively with partners in, legal/IP, biochemistry, pharmacology, DMPK, toxicology, project management, CMC and early development.
  • Advance the Mirati portfolio value through presentation/publication of project results in scientific meetings and peer-reviewed literature
  • Engage potential partners for Mirati projects by presenting Mirati projects as appropriate in business development discussions; provide due diligence in drug discovery to potential BD opportunities for Mirati
  • Provide research project updates and strategic vision for research to the Mirati Board of Directors and Advisory Boards as appropriate


  • PhD in organic or medicinal chemistry with >5 years of relevant post-graduate experience
  • Recognized as an intellectual leader in medicinal chemistry and drug discovery with a track record of patents, publications and project achievements.
  • Demonstrated track record of delivering candidates into clinical development.
  • Project leadership experience.
  • Knowledge of oncology therapeutic area and oncology drug discovery.
  • Extensive working knowledge of modern medicinal chemistry and drug discovery techniques (e.g., fragment or structure-based drug design, computational chemistry, multi-attribute analysis, flexible resourcing models, alternative delivery systems.)
  • Experience with the concepts and methods of analytical chemistry, drug metabolism, and influence of ADME properties on drug design and development.
  • Experience managing scientific collaborations and contracted research.