Computational Chemist Lead

TITLE: Computational Chemistry Lead

LOCATION: BioCity, Newhouse, ML1 5UH, UK or Cambridge, UK

SALARY: Competitive salary and benefits package, relative to qualifications and experience


Amphista is a fast-growing UK-based biotech at the cutting edge of Targeted Protein Degradation research to discover new treatments for cancer and other serious illnesses. We are seeking an experienced, creative and highly motivated Computational Chemist to join our multi-disciplinary, collaborative team contributing across our portfolio in the design and analysis of new therapeutic compounds.

This role, which can be based at either of Amphista’s research hubs in Cambridge, UK or BioCity Glasgow, UK is an exciting opportunity to join a fast paced, dynamic company developing first-in-class medicines to treat cancer and other areas of high unmet medical need.


Responsibilities include:

Working closely with experienced medicinal chemists and other drug discovery scientists within close project teams to contribute to the design and prioritisation of protein degrading molecules as well as analysing project data and building predictive design tools and models to accelerate the optimisation process. Your contributions will directly impact multiple drug discovery projects and also help grow the proprietary Amphista protein degrading platform.


  • Providing computational chemistry support to the Amphista portfolio of projects. This may include a range of areas from molecular modelling & docking through to cheminformatic analyses and predictive model building. Specific areas include:
    • Design and optimisation of ligands and bifunctional degraders using x-ray structural data, homology models etc.
    • Ligand identification from literature analyses or virtual screening.
    • Collation and analysis of complex, multi-parametric datasets to rationalise SAR and build predictive models in areas such as biological activity, selectivity, in vivo properties and others.
  • Working closely with medicinal chemists to provide computational solutions to significant hit identification and lead optimisation project challenges.
  • Providing computational analyses and solutions to projects via your own personal contributions as well as by working with external vendors or collaborators where appropriate.
  • Building computational tools and models with potential utility within specific projects as well as across the entire Amphista portfolio.
  • Creating tools and solutions for use by project team members as well as expert tools.
  • Contributing to the success of one or more projects as a key protect team member working closely with colleagues from biology, drug metabolism and other groups.
  • Critically analyse project data and contribute ideas that will drive projects forward.
  • Support the continuing development of Amphista’s protein degradation capabilities.
  • Maintaining an up to date literature knowledge of computational chemistry strategies and protein degradation chemistry.
  • Creating data summaries and visualisations able to communicate and display complex datasets and conclusions in intuitive and interactive ways.
  • Present your work within project teams & wider company, cross-site meetings with the potential to also present to external audiences.
  • Maintaining electronic lab notebook records and contributing to drafting of patent applications when appropriate.


Required attributes:

  • PhD in a computational chemistry-related discipline or equivalent experience with at least 3 years experience of hands-on delivery of computational chemistry support in a drug discovery project setting in pharma, biotech or academic drug discovery unit.
  • Experience of structure-based and ligand-based design using shape, fingerprint and pharmacophore-based methods including library design & enumeration and lead-hopping.
  • Experience of extensive SAR analysis of project data sets, calculation of ADME/Tox properties and building of models to allow property prediction.
  • Outstanding knowledge and hands on experience of using a wide range of computational tools across molecular modelling and cheminformatics. These may include MOE, Cresset, Schrodinger tools.
  • Wide experience of usage of data analysis, visualisation & pipeline tools which may include Vortex, Spotfire, Data Warrior, Pipeline Pilot, Knime.
  • Track record of successfully working in multidisciplinary settings and in a collaborative manner where your work has directly impacted project decisions and success.
  • Strong interpersonal & communication skills able to explain complex concepts in an intuitive and interactive manner to a wide range of project members and senior leaders.
  • Proven track record of delivery from your own personal project contributions.
  • Willingness to travel to and spend significant time at both Amphista research hubs in BioCity Glasgow & Cambridge, UK to work closely with project team members.
  • Must be fun to work with.


In addition, it would be desirable that the successful candidate has:

  • Familiarity with storing and analysing data using the Dotmatics suite of tools.
  • A working knowledge of Python.



About Amphista:

Amphista Therapeutics is a fast-growing biotech and the leading Europe-based Targeted Protein Degradation (TPD) company. Initially founded from the laboratory of Professor Alessio Ciulli (University of Dundee) our team comprises both academic and drug discovery pioneers of the TPD field and a growing R&D team focused on advancing a portfolio of medicines using our proprietary next generation TPD technologies. We recently completed an oversubscribed $53M funding round to allow us to advance our portfolio towards the clinic and greatly strengthen the development of our underlying scientific platform.

Amphista’s approaches use completely novel mechanisms to build on all the advantages of TPD while directly addressing the emerging limitations of existing TPD strategies to expand the utility of the field. In particular, we have shown our approach has the potential to be superior to all other TPD approaches (PROTACs, molecular glues etc) through our unique novel mechanisms giving expanded scope, improved druglike properties and reduced tumour resistance potential. We have a range of projects in the discovery phase, initially focused on oncology with potential to expand into other therapy areas including CNS disease & immunology. Amphista R&D is based in our twin research hubs in BioCity Glasgow, and Cambridge, UK from where we also work with a wide range of global collaborators and CROs.


Applicants should submit a CV and covering letter by email quoting ref compchem0821 to