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Senior Research Scientist, Biochemical Assay Development (x2)

AstraZeneca UK

Location: Cambridgeshire

Job Type: Full time


Be empowered to be innovative and creative where difference is valued

Join a place built on innovation and creativity. Where different views and perspectives are welcomed and valued. An environment that champions inclusion, and teams that reflect the diversity of the communities that we serve.

Who we are

A hard-working and impactful team, we are united and motivated by our shared purpose – to deliver life-changing medicines. We come to work each day to make a difference – to patients, society and our company!

Our workforce reflects the people we serve – diversity is embedded in everything we do. We’re at our best and most creative when drawing on our different views, experiences and strengths.

As a Senior Research Scientist in Biochemical Assay Development, you’ll play a pivotal role in channelling our scientific capabilities making a positive impact on changing patients’ lives!

You will work within our Discovery Sciences team, part of AstraZeneca’s Biopharmaceutical R&D organisation, which focuses on scientific advances in established and emerging medicine formats and drug discovery technologies across therapeutic areas including oncology, respiratory, cardiovascular, inflammation and neurosciences.

The Bio-Assay Development group is responsible for the generation of novel biochemical assays to support projects in all phases of the drug discovery pipeline.

What You’ll do

This is a lab-based role where you’ll be a key member of our team, developing biochemical assays for profiling and mechanism-of-action studies in support of Oncology drug discovery projects.

  • Deliver expertise in the area of biochemical assay development; independently designing, developing and validating biochemical assays for implementation, while incorporating the views of others
  • Working in partnership with colleagues in the High Throughput Screening and Mechanistic Biology & Profiling teams to ensure that assays are designed optimally and implemented effectively
  • Implementing work-plans over agreed timelines such that objectives are met, including delivery of more than one agreed area of work in parallel, where appropriate
  • Acting as effective member of Drug Discovery Project Teams, providing novel ideas and using judgement and knowledge, where appropriate to influence the work of the project
  • Maintaining an up-to-date awareness of current developments in the literature and supporting the continuous improvement process by finding opportunities within the workplace where improvements can be made
  • Achieving personal scientific visibility through project contributions and collaborations and internal presentations at departmental or functional meetings; and externally through poster & oral conference presentations and authorship on peer-reviewed publications

Essential Criteria

  • Ph.D or equivalent in Biology, Pharmacology, Biochemistry or a related subject area or a BSc/MSc degree with significant up-to-date experience, preferably in the pharmaceutical or biotechnology industries
  • Proven success in the design, development and validation of biochemical assays for compound profiling and screening applications; together with an understanding of application to deliver mechanistic insight into compound mode of action
  • A practical understanding of a wide range of biochemical assay methods and technologies as applied to a range of biological targets
  • Extensive knowledge of assay optimisation, and an understanding of statistical tools such as factorial experimental design, to enable generation of robust, reproducible and sensitive assays
  • Excellent problem-solving skills, sound scientific judgement, outstanding communication skills and a desire to work collaboratively as part of a high-achieving, impactful team

Desirable Criteria

  • Research experience in Oncology
  • Experience with mass spectrometry
  • Experience of profiling compounds in biochemical and cell assays
  • Positive team working and networking skills with experience of interacting effectively across interfaces of field, culture, and expertise, with an ability to work with external parties

AZ Cambridge

Currently based at our Darwin building on the Cambridge Science Park, the Functional Genomics team are excited for their pending relocation to our brand new, state-of-the-art R&D facility, which was officially un-veiled in November 2021, by His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales.

The Discovery Centre (DISC), located at the heart of the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, is designed to play a central role in our mission to deliver life-changing medicines to patients. As our largest research and development centre in the UK, it will have more than 2,000 people working across therapy areas and drug discovery and development once fully occupied.

Find out more about our Cambridge campus and the DISC, here:

So, what’s next?

This advert will be running from Monday, 17th October 2022, and we welcome your application as soon as possible. The scheduled closing date is Friday, 4th ber 2022.

Where can I find out more?

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Date Posted


Closing Date


AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements.