Principal Scientist, Bioanalytical and Pharmacokinetics Back to Careers

Back to Team

Based in San Diego, CA, Escient Pharmaceuticals is a start-up biotech company strategically focused on unleashing the therapeutic potential of specific orphan GPCRs, including a novel family of Mas-Related G-Protein Receptors (Mrgprs), for a broad range of therapeutic indications. We will initially pursue drugs for neuro-immuno-inflammatory and autoreactive diseases. Our diverse team at Escient shares a passion for discovering and developing therapies for underserved patients that will positively change the course of their health and well-being. In addition, we embrace a unique and highly sought-after culture of authenticity, open communication, transparency, integrity, mutual respect, and freedom to brainstorm and share one’s thoughts and ideas at every level.

Of immediate need to Escient is a Bioanalytical / PK Scientist to join our Pharmacokinetics (PK) and Toxicology group. The ideal candidate holds a Ph.D. or M.S. in biochemistry, pharmacology, chemistry or a related field and is a highly motivated and talented bioanalytical scientist skilled at developing LC-MS/MS methods to measure small molecule drug candidates in various matrices. The individual must also be skilled at analyzing and interpreting the resulting PK data and be familiar with regulatory requirements related to PK. This position will require an individual who can provide leadership with respect to the bioanalytical and PK disciplines on project teams. As is the case with all start-up companies, it is essential that the candidate be comfortable with, and thrive in, a fast-paced entrepreneurial environment which necessitates a hands-on approach at all levels.

Responsibilities include the following:

  • Establish a state-of-the-art bioanalytical laboratory to support measurement of small molecule drug candidates in biological samples;
  • Conduct, manage and interpret in vitro drug metabolism studies, including microsomal and hepatocyte intrinsic clearance, cytochrome P450 inhibition, and plasma protein binding evaluations to inform the selection of drug candidates;
  • Develop methods and conduct/manage biological sample analysis in plasma and tissue using LC-MS/MS;
  • Identify metabolites across species to support the selection of appropriate toxicology species, and ensure relevant metabolites are qualified;
  • With appropriate support from vendors, maintain and troubleshoot bioanalytical instrumentation;
  • Generate, interpret, and apply PK parameter estimates using Phoenix WinNonlin, and other applicable software, to support candidate selection and human dose projection;
  • Represent the Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic (PK-PD) discipline on project teams and participate in the development of biomarker strategies to inform dose selection for initial clinical studies;
  • Author module 2 sections of INDs related to ADME and participate in the preparation of other regulatory documentation (e.g. Investigators Brochure, DSUR, primary technical reports etc.); and
  • Contribute to the development of the company’s strategy to optimize ADMET properties in the lead optimization phase of development and beyond.

Qualifications include the following:

  • Ph.D. or M.S. in biochemistry, pharmacology, chemistry or a related field with at least 10 years of practical experience in developing and executing bioanalytical methods to support small molecule drug development;
  • Demonstrated in-depth knowledge of PK-PD principles and their application to early drug development, including familiarity with assays used to screen early hits for drug-like properties (e.g. microsomal stability, protein binding, caco-2 permeability);
  • Expert user of Phoenix WinNonlin or similar PK modeling software;
  • Demonstrated record of success in bioanalytical sciences/pharmacokinetics as evidenced by publications, patents, and/or participation in programs that resulted in the advancement of drug candidates into advanced clinical trials;
  • Desire to implement bioanalytical methods and manage team members conducting hands-on work in a fast-paced research and development environment;
  • Experience with metabolite identification and knowledge of regulatory expectations related to qualification of metabolites;
  • Computer Skills: Advanced knowledge of Excel, Word, PowerPoint and Graphpad prism;
  • Alignment with the company’s culture; and
  • Core Competencies:
    • Ability to thrive in a fast-paced, hands-on research and development environment;
    • Effective at planning, organizing, and prioritizing;
    • Able to handle multiple tasks and deliver high quality results under tight timelines;
    • High attention to detail and accuracy;
    • Effective troubleshooting and problem-solving skills;
    • Flexible and adaptable to change;
    • Adept at building strong relationships and collaborating with colleagues at all levels;
    • Effective team player and strong individual contributor;
    • Highly collaborative, self-motivated, and team-oriented; and
    • Effective communicator in both oral and written form.

Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee will regularly be required to use his/her hands and fingers to operate a computer keyboard, mouse, and telephone keypad or to write, as well as talk and hear. The employee will regularly be required to sit, stand, walk, talk and hear; use hands to handle or feel; see computer screens and read printouts; and reach with arms and hands. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to focus. The employee needs to be able to stand for long periods of time in a laboratory setting including in front of a hood and at the bench. As well, s/he may occasionally be required to lift up to 50 pounds.

If you thrive in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment and are in search of a dynamic, multi-disciplinary team focused on discovering and developing therapies that will positively change the course of the health and well-being of underserved patients, we encourage you to apply. Escient Pharmaceuticals offers a positive and exciting work environment with competitive pay structures and benefits. Escient is an equal opportunity employer.

To apply for this position please email your cover letter and CV to