Pharmacyclics, LLC

Senior Scientist I, Enzymology

Sunnyvale, CA, United States
Dec 06, 2018
Biotech Bay
Required Education
Position Type
Full time
Pharmacyclics is committed to the development and commercialization of novel therapies intended to improve the quality and duration of life and to resolve serious unmet medical needs for cancer patients. Pharmacyclics is a wholly-owned subsidiary of AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV), a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company. Oncology is a key therapeutic area for AbbVie, with a portfolio consisting of three marketed products and a pipeline containing multiple promising new molecules that are being studied in more than 200 clinical trials for over 20 different types of cancer.

More than 1,200 Pharmacyclics and AbbVie research scientists, clinicians, marketing, operations and corporate professionals work in the San Francisco Bay Area. They combine their expertise in immuno-oncology, stem cells, and cell-signaling with their knowledge of bispecific antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), and covalent-inhibitor technologies to discover and develop novel cancer treatments. Together, we are striving to outsmart cancer.

To learn more about us, please visit us at

General Position Summary/Purpose:

Provide strong scientific and technical leadership and hands-on implementation of various biochemical compound screening assays for small-molecule drug discovery projects and provide mechanistic understanding of drug-target interactions via enzymology/biochemistry knowledge in the fields of hematologic malignancies and immuno-oncology. Conceive and execute novel scientific approaches to achieve departmental project goals.

Key Accountabilities/Core Job Responsibilities:

  • Demonstrate scientific independence & leadership to establish and implement strategies for understanding the mechanisms of action of drugs and translation into future therapies for new indications in immune diseases/hematological malignancies.
  • Hands-on execution : Advance science from the bench, Design and execute various in vitro experiments in multiple mix and read assay formats to determine potency and selectivity of small molecules to understand their SAR and provide in-depth analysis of their mode of action based on enzyme catalysis and kinetics. Lead the development, optimization, and validation of new assays.
  • Apply basic cell and molecular biology techniques to identify and evaluate cellular efficacy and selectivity endpoints. Utilize technical expertise and available information to troubleshoot and resolve key project hurdles when encountered.
  • Actively participate in internal and external scientific meetings by presenting and critically evaluating emerging scientific literature to facilitate further progress and success of key projects assigned.
  • Perform and manage in-house, CRO, or collaborative research to support the development of therapies in a variety of hematological malignancies.
  • Prioritize tasks and contribute to a highly motivated and productive research team with a sense of urgency and desire to meet project timelines.


  • PhD with post-doctoral training plus a minimum of 1-2 years of industry experience in biochemistry/enzymology, drug discovery or related fields.
  • Experience characterizing diverse enzymes, their specific activities, structural features and understanding/interpreting enzyme reaction as well as enzyme kinetics using state-of-the-art methods.
  • Ability to use appropriate software to model enzyme system behavior and complement experimental data analysis.
  • Must be highly collaborative and able to effectively engage small-molecule research project teams to make rapid progress.
  • Familiarity with techniques and instrumentation relevant to automated plate-based assays and the use of multiple techniques to monitor enzyme reactions
  • Strong track record of peer-reviewed publications and presentations at national meetings.
  • Strong interpersonal skills to thrive in a team environment.
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.


  • Design and develop novel biochemical microplate assays to identify and characterize small-molecule modulators using a variety of techniques and detection methods, including FP, FRET, TR-FRET, BRET, SPR, MST, CETSA, MSD, Lab-Chip MSA, mass spectrometric, chromogenic, and radiometric formats
  • Basic knowledge of protein chemistry including protein expression, purification and characterization by various biotechniques is highly desirable.
  • Perform enzyme kinetic analyses and MOA studies to characterize diverse biological enzyme systems, including kinases, hydrolases, ligases, proteases and synthases.
  • Develop assays using purified-component and cell-based systems configured to identify authentic small-molecule inhibitors or activators and predict their activity in vivo
  • Provide enzymology expertise to discovery project teams at various stages of advancement
  • Work closely with project teams and Bioassays and HTS colleagues to deploy biochemical assays for high-throughput screening and to drive SAR development
  • Experience in establishing and fully validating compound potency assays using cell lines or primary human cells is essential. Experience in using cell biology models to elucidate molecular mechanisms of action.
  • Good knowledge of programing, designing and executing various biochemical and cellular assays using Automated Liquid Handlers is highly desirable.
  • Oversee outsourcing of enzyme assays to external CROs and monitor results
  • Experience in managing direct report(s) in industrial settings is preferred but not essential.

Equal Opportunity Employer Minorities/Women/Veterans/Disabled