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Research Assistant/Associate

Requisition ID:  1218

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Fixed Term
Posted Date:  19-Nov-2019


We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.


Salary: £28,331 - £32,817

Closing Date: 01 January 2020


The role

Based in the Faculty of Medical Sciences, Medicinal Chemistry Laboratories, as part of the Cancer Research UK Drug Discovery Programme, you will design, synthesise and characterise novel small molecule targeted anticancer compounds with a view to optimising them to candidate drugs.


You will have a PhD (or be close to completion for appointment as Assistant level) as well as experience in synthetic organic chemistry and have an understanding of medicinal chemistry and drug design.


This is a fixed term post tenable until 24 October 2020.


As part of our commitment to career development for research staff, the University has developed 3 levels of research role profiles.  These profiles set out firstly the generic competences and responsibilities expected of role holders at each level and secondly the general qualifications and experiences needed for entry at a particular level.


For any informal enquiries please contact Professor Mike Waring at mike.waring@newcastle.ac.uk


Key Accountabilities

  • Research on project: design and synthesis of novel anticancer drugs including:
  1. Structure-based design of novel ligands for cancer targets.
  2. Development of optimised synthetic routes to target compounds.
  3. Purification (including HPLC) and full characterisation of target compounds.
  4. Use of computational chemistry software and cheminformatics database.
  5. Writing of scientific papers.
  6. Contribution to grant writing.
  7. Oral presentation at meetings.
  • Regular liaison with the Principal Investigators to organise workload and the provision of support for the satisfactory operation of research activities, facilities and equipment.
  • Provide assistance to, and training of, academic, technical and research staff and students on specific experimental techniques and in the use of specialised laboratory equipment.
  • In conjunction with the Principal Investigators, contribute to the planning of equipment and material needs. You will maintain laboratory stocks of chemicals and other consumable requirements. You will determine requirements and initiate orders, within specific laboratory ordering procedures.
  • Consult with academic staff regarding developing new or improved methods for experimental systems and present experiment results to academic staff.
  • Keep excellent laboratory records of all experimental procedures and outcomes, enabling interpretation with team members.
  • The performance of risk assessments and maintaining safety laboratory records (e.g. COSHH and other regulations) in consultation with academic staff.
  • To be responsible for the care and cleanliness of specific common user areas.
  • To ensure good working standards and maintain quality control.


The Person (Essential)

Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Experience in synthetic organic chemistry.
  • Core skills in NMR and informatics.
  • Experience in a range of analytical techniques.
  • An understanding of medicinal chemistry and drug design.
  • Experience of managing safety aspects of work (e.g. COSHH).
  • Good organisational skills.
  • Excellent oral communication and writing skills.
  • Ability to work within a team.
  • Laboratory supervision of students (PhD, MSc, BSc) is desirable.

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Capacity for original thought.
  • Enthusiastic and hard working.
  • Interest in a career in research.



  • Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) in a relevant science subject – preferably organic or medicinal chemistry.
  • A PhD in the area of organic or medicinal chemistry or similar subject (or be close to completion for appointment at Research Assistant level).

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.


Requisition ID: 1218