University of Dundee

Assay Development Scientist (Biochemistry): Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research

Biological Chemistry and Drug Discovery
Job Reference: 
Closing Date: 
Friday, June 2, 2017
Grade 7 (£31,076 - £38,183)

A new post has been created as part of the recently established Wellcome Centre for Anti-Infectives Research (CAIR), University of Dundee. CAIR supports and works closely with the University of Dundee, Drug Discovery Unit (DDU) ( to facilitate the discovery and development of new drugs for neglected infectious tropical diseases. Together, the CAIR and the DDU form a dynamic and multidisciplinary group that covers all aspects of drug discovery up to candidate selection. The group is housed in a state-of-the-art building and has cutting-edge equipment and automation for anti-infectives research.

Available for 3 years in the first instance, this post holder will be part of the DDU’s Kinetoplastid Drug Discovery team. The post will involve:

- The development of high-throughput biochemical assays for protein targets relevant to neglected tropical diseases (including operation of robotics and high volume data handling and interpretation).
- Providing biological expertise to support progression of projects.
- Regular interactions with a team of biochemists, chemists, structural biologists and DMPK scientists.

The successful candidate will be expected to:
- Design and perform experiments, follow protocols meticulously and report results, both verbally and in writing, within agreed timelines.
- Maintain detailed, industry-standard, electronic records of all experiments.
- Assist with routine maintenance and troubleshooting of instruments and laboratory housekeeping functions.
- Comply with Health and Safety practices within the Unit.


- Candidates are expected to have a PhD in Biochemistry or Pharmacology (or other appropriate life science discipline) or have equivalent experience and a keen interest in drug discovery.
- Expertise developing enzymatic assays.
- Understanding of enzyme kinetics.
- Experience with curve-fitting, data handling and analysis.
- High level of attention to detail.
- Strong organisational skills including ability to prioritise.
- Ability to work to tight deadlines and rigorous standards.
- Flexible approach to projects; priorities may change based on overall portfolio needs and strategy.
- Good interpersonal / communication skills.
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team.

- Knowledge of the drug discovery process with a particular focus on the hit-discovery stage.
- Understanding of quality and robustness metrics used for high-throughput screening.
- Expertise using lab automation, and transfer of assays to a high-throughput format.
- Experience with Design-of-Experiments (DOE).

The successful applicant will be part of the CAIR/DDU Biology group and will report to the Biochemistry Team Leader. In the medium term you will expected to contribute to the overall portfolio by identifying and assessing potential new approaches and projects. Opportunities are available for continuing education, conference attendance and scientific publishing, so career development opportunities will be available for the right candidate.

For informal enquiries please contact Manu De Rycker (

The starting salary for this post will be within Grade 7 (£31,076 - £38,183) depending on the experience of the candidate. A relocation allowance is available.

How to apply:

To apply on-line click here.

The University of Dundee is a diverse community and is committed to equality of opportunity for all by providing a supportive, flexible and inclusive working environment.  We have family friendly policies (including flexible working and childcare vouchers), staff groups for LGBT and BME; and prayer room facilities.

The University of Dundee has received the Athena SWAN Bronze Award ( which recognises the promotion of gender equality and has made further commitment to advancing inclusive culture which supports and encourages all under-represented groups.

The University of Dundee is a Scottish Registered Charity, No. SC015096.