skip to Main Content

Director, Medicinal Chemistry – Ref. 145 B

Position: Director, Medicinal Chemistry

IRBM is a drug discovery and development company with a track record of success in accelerating and executing the translation of novel discoveries into clinically relevant therapeutic modalities, including small molecules, peptides and monoclonal antibodies.  IRBM is headquartered in Pomezia (Rome), Italy and provides  integrated pre-clinical laboratory services across the entire drug discovery process, ranging from target validation to clinical candidate molecule selection.  The company operates through collaborations with a number of pharmaceutical companies, biotech’s as well as research institutes and non-profit foundations working in a range of disease indications.  IRBM is committed to the discovery and development of novel therapeutic agents that can help fight and cure diseases.

Job Description

  • IRBM is looking for an experienced, enthusiastic and highly motivated medicinal chemist to lead our Medicinal Chemistry Unit.  The ideal candidate will have demonstrated leadership in medicinal chemistry as evidenced by a strong record of scientific accomplishments, patents filing and delivery of clinical candidates if not approved drugs. She/he will be responsible for driving medicinal chemistry efforts in a dynamic small molecule R&D team through Hit ID, Lead Identification (LI), Lead Optimization (LO), and clinical candidate selection.  The successful candidate should be an expert in organic chemistry and have excellent knowledge of medicinal chemistry principles with a strong understanding of the basic biology and pharmacology of programs, series SAR and ADME issues.  She/he will be able to effectively integrate this knowledge and apply the key principles of medicinal chemistry, literature precedent, and drug design to direct medicinal chemistry programs to go/no go decisions.  As a member of our R&D leadership team, the successful candidate will provide strategic input to guide portfolio management decisions.  This position reports directly to the CSO and is expected to significantly impact company performance by growing our internal chemistry capabilities and enhancing our flexible and hybrid business model for small molecule drug discovery.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Provide strong and effective leadership in medicinal chemistry and prioritize internal and external activities to ensure timely and on-budget delivery on project goals and projects alignment with company objectives.
  • Responsible for the success of the chemistry aspects of the drug discovery teams; build and maintain high quality and effective interactions with colleagues in chemistry, biology, structural biology and pharmacology to support and achieve projects goals and objectives.
  • Provide strategic advice to maintain and expand our portfolio of clients; pro-actively contribute to feed the pipeline of internal projects with new research ideas and initiatives.
  • Inspire and mentor project leaders and medicinal chemists in laboratory synthesis and problem solving.
  • Lead the preparation of patent documents, peer-reviewed publications, scientific reports and grants application as required.
  • Participate in company portfolio and stage-gate reviews, lead the preparation and presentation of programs advancement.  Represent the company as the scientific expert in medicinal chemistry in collaborations and alliances with both internal and external partners.
  • Maintain high standards of laboratory safety, comply with all safety requirements according to Italian laws

Leadership competencies/skills:

  • Demonstrated success in leading chemistry and projects teams to deliver high quality compounds into development.
  • Proficient and knowledgeable in SAR, FBDD, SBDD and other medicinal chemistry platforms but also has the instinct of a seasoned drug hunter.
  • Proven ability to manage timelines and resources to drive projects toward key decision points
  • Outstanding ability to manage and motivate team and find creative solutions to problems.
  • Work effectively in a multi-disciplinary environment that requires close collaboration with scientists that have different expertise and experience. Exhibit high degree of flexibility and adaptability when projects and goals shift.
  • Demonstrated influence, negotiation, and conflict resolution skills.
  • Understanding of the biology of potential drug targets and systems biology.
  • Externally recognized drug discovery expertise (through publications, presentations & patent records).
  • In-depth understanding of process/strategy of intellectual property foundation, in the shaping of IP strategies and the use of IP to enhance the value of company assets, activities and programs.
  • Expert knowledge of modern methods of peptide chemistry would be considered a highly desirable plus.
  • Excellent organization skills: organized, results-driven, detail-oriented, and able to multi-task
  • Exceptional written and oral communication and negotiation skills (in English) are essential


  • D. in Organic Chemistry, Medicinal Chemistry or related field with 13-15+ years industrial experience as a medicinal chemist in a pharmaceutical or biotech company


Back To Top