Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Senior Research Scientist - Medicinal Chemistry

San Diego, CA
Jun 19, 2019
Required Education
Position Type
Full time

Job Description


We are seeking a highly motivated senior medicinal chemist to join Vertex’s research site in San Diego, CA.   This individual will be responsible for impacting lead optimization programs by identifying and solving tough synthetic and medicinal chemistry problems, creating project relevant hypotheses and interpretation of SAR and generating insights that influence research strategies. The ideal candidate must demonstrate a thorough knowledge of organic chemistry, be up to date with contemporary synthetic methods and show competence in the preparation of both single and focused sets of small organic molecules and development of optimized synthetic methods. This person must be a strong team player with the desire to join a highly innovative company aimed at transforming the lives of people with serious diseases, their families and society.
Key Responsibilities:


  • Designs synthetic target for lead discovery and optimization to address target potency, selectivity and pharmacokinetic properties
  • Develops and executes clear synthetic routes using state-of-the-art synthetic methodologies
  • Develops novel and creative solutions to overcome project and medicinal chemistry obstacles
  • Generates effective hypotheses to pursue, followed by experimental planning and execution
  • Makes substantive conceptual contributions to project activities and scientific strategies
  • Imports new principles/concepts from other fields to establish new progress within the project
  • Presents data and reports on project status at group, and departmental meetings
  • Supports the advancement of compounds through in vitro and in vivo studies to identify development candidates
  • Minimum Qualifications


    Minimum Qualifications


  • Ph.D. (or equivalent) in Organic Chemistry or a related discipline 
  • At least 5 years of pharmaceutical or biotech experience with a demonstrated track record of contributions to drug discovery projects
  • Detail-oriented with excellent organizational and communication skills, both verbal and written.
  • Highly self-motivated and ability to multitask, navigate and be successful in a fast-paced, highly- matrixed team environment.
  • Demonstrated capabilities in problem-solving and creative scientific approaches.
  • Ability to prepare written and oral reports including publications and project plans, provide technical input, and make presentations. 

Company Information


Vertex is a global biotechnology company that invests in scientific innovation to create transformative medicines for people with serious and life-threatening diseases. We discovered and developed the first medicines to treat the underlying cause of cystic fibrosis (CF), a rare, life-threatening genetic disease. In addition to clinical development programs in CF, Vertex has more than a dozen ongoing research programs focused on the underlying mechanisms of other serious diseases. 

Founded in 1989 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, our corporate headquarters is now located in Boston's Innovation District, and our international headquarters is in London, United Kingdom. We currently employ approximately 2,500 people in the United States, Europe, Canada, Australia and Latin America with nearly two-thirds of our staff dedicated to research and development. 

Vertex is consistently recognized as one of the industry’s top places to work by Science Magazine, The Boston Globe, Boston Business Journal and the San Diego Business Journal. Our research and medicines have also received esteemed recognitions, including the Robert J. Beall Therapeutics Development Award, the French Prix Galien and the British Pharmacological Society awards. For additional information and the latest updates from the Company, please visit 

Vertex is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person's race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, ancestry, ethnicity, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, marital status, or any characteristic protected under applicable law. Vertex is an E-Verify Employer in the United States. Vertex will make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with known disabilities, in accordance with applicable law. Any applicant requiring an accommodation in connection with the hiring process and/or to perform the essential functions of the position for which the applicant has applied should make a request to the recruiter or hiring manager, or contact Talent Acquisition at