A long-standing challenge in drug discovery is the development of molecules capable of modulating difficult or "undruggable" targets. Disease-causing proteins can be dysfunctional in many different ways, but our armamentarium for fixing them is quite limited. The most common mechanism of action for FDA approved drugs is inhibition, but there are many other possible perturbation types whose potential remains unrealized.
Weatherwax Biotechnologies is a seed-stage drug discovery company developing a novel platform technology to solve this problem. We make bifunctional drugs that induce the modification of drug targets by existing cellular machinery (rather than through direct modulation by the drug, the classical approach).
Historically, the development of technologies that allow one to push new buttons in biology has been an incredibly fertile field for the discovery of new medicines, and our approach will be no different.
We are seeking an experienced medicinal chemist to be a founding member of our Platform/Drug Discovery Team. In this position you will work in close conjunction with our Biology Team in the development of our core drug discovery technology and the generation of a completely novel class of therapeutics.
Your responsibilities will include: supervising synthetic efforts with our CROs, designing and optimizing first-in-class bifunctional molecules, collaborating with our Drug Discovery and IP team on patent applications, providing input for mechanistic studies on lead drug molecules, and spearheading forays into new disease areas.
High Agency. Initiative, independence, and self-accountability are some of our most valued traits.
Enthusiastic. We love people who are excited about what they are doing, and are generally attempting to build a high-energy team.
Intensity and Grit. Early-stage startups are hard. Drug discovery doubly so. We are looking for candidates who have a demonstrated ability to stick with hard problems for the long haul, with a team that has your back along the way.
Prosocial. We are here to create life-saving medicines for the patients who need it most. You should be too.
Qualifications & Nice-To-Haves
PhD in Medicinal Chemistry, Chemical Biology, Pharmacology, or related field.
3+ years of industry experience.
Deep understanding of small-molecule drug discovery and its relationship to human disease:
Experience with designing, synthesizing, and optimizing bifunctional molecules (e.g. PROTACs or other CIDs).
Hit finding and hit-to-lead studies.
Med-chem optimizations: SAR, PK/PD, etc.
Proficiency in biophysical techniques such as SPR.
Nice to have:
Proficiency in HTS and phenotypic assay development and screening.
Proteomics experience: PTM analysis, chemo-proteomic target deconvolution, etc.
Computational drug discovery experience.
Experience managing others, especially synthetic chemistry CRO teams.
Prior experience on teams that have successfully advanced research to the clinic
Strong equity incentives. We are looking for candidates who will bring a strong sense of ownership to drive their project areas forward, and we believe that you deserve to be compensated accordingly.
Top tier medical, dental, and vision coverage + One Medical membership.
Education and health/fitness incentive programs.
Reading budget! We will buy you books 📚
Located in the MBC BioLabs Dogpatch site; an entrepreneurial hub full of the best scientists and operators the Bay Area has to offer. Our lab is a very short walk from the 22nd St Caltrain Station and a number of wonderful restaurants and cafés.
Work Hard/Play Hard. We believe time is our most valuable commodity, so we strive to create a culture that reflects this. We won’t drag you through unnecessary meetings or email you at 7 PM on a Saturday. When we're at work we're there to get things done and when we're off we're really off.
Strong Communication. We like well-written documents over PowerPoints, OKRs over vague mission statements, and weekly one-on-ones over yearly reviews.
Writing First. We have a "writing-first" culture. We believe that clarity of writing reflects clarity of thinking, and that the benefits of well-written documentation in a scientific environment are innumerable: democratization of ideation and decision making, increased reproducibility, quicker scaling and onboarding, and better company-wide alignment, to name a few.
Growth. As an early-stage startup we value scientists with an independent, can-do attitude. The more hats you can wear, the better. Our job as employers is to put you in positive-feedback loops so you can grow in the direction of your choosing.
Title and compensation commensurate with experience. Applications from candidates of diverse backgrounds, women, and members of underrepresented minority groups are particularly welcomed. We look forward to hearing from you :)