Principal Scientist – Primary Pharmacology Group

Groton, CT
Nov 12, 2020
Required Education
Masters Degree/MBA
Position Type
Full time

The successful candidate will join a team of 50 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. Working collaboratively with project teams from the Immunology and Inflammation research unit, (s)he will lead the design and establishment of disease-relevant pharmacology strategies for both target-based and phenotypic programs, providing support from exploratory 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, cell 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, (s)he should demonstrate a personal drive, leadership skills, flexibility/resiliency, and a good sense of humor.




  • We seek an autonomous laboratory scientist to support hit identification and lead optimization for small molecule drugs discovery projects for the Immunology & Inflammation research unit.
  • This scientist will lead the design of in vitro pharmacology strategies for target-based and phenotypic projects.
  • (S)he will also 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. 
  • (S)he 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.

 BASIC QUALIFICATIONS                                                


  • 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.
  • Practical experience in cell culture, 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,…) in a drug discovery setting.
  • Experience in functional genomics screening (siRNA, CRISPR).
  • Knowledge of associated disciplines such as molecular and cellular biology, 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 (2-3h away) and Pearl River, NY (2h away) sites to meet project team members.
  • Candidate must comply with laboratory safety practices and wear personal protection as required.

Other Job Details:


  • Eligible for Relocation Package: YES
  • Eligible for Employee Referral Bonus: YES