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Research Assistant/Associate in AI & Fragment Based Drug Discovery

Newcastle University

Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Salary: £28,756 to £33,309 rising to £44,706 for Research Associate.
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 24th November 2021
Closes: 13th December 2021
Job Ref: 13927

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 Northeast of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

The Role
An exciting opportunity has arisen for a talented and enthusiastic scientist to be part of an early-stage project within the Newcastle University Biosciences Institute with Professor Wyatt Yue focussing on translating enzymic mechanisms to novel drug discovery. This project is aimed towards identifying and characterising small molecule mimics that act on a multiprotein enzyme complex. Working closely with an AI technology company in hit identification, you will carry out hit validation using x-ray crystallography, cryo-EM and biophysical assays, to drive iterative cycles of ligand design, with the overall goal of the project is chemical starting points to develop novel therapy for a debilitating rare disease.

You will have hands on experience in determining structures of protein complexes by x-ray crystallography or cryo-Em. Experience in structure based drug discovery would be highly advantageous.

This post is a full-time position tenable for 24 months or until 31/12/2023.

Further information can be obtained by contacting Prof Wyatt Yue (wyatt.yue@newcastle.ac.uk) or from the labs webpage (https://www.staff.ncl.ac.uk/yuelab/).

Key Accountabilities

  • Working under the general guidance of Principal Investigator, the postholder will contribute ideas, including enhancements to the technical or methodological aspects of the project.
  • Develop and carry out the specified project using appropriate techniques, methodologies and equipment in structural biology and protein biophysics.
  • Begin to write, with appropriate support, proposals for individual research funding.
  • Assess research findings for the need/scope for further investigations.
  • Present research findings, either at conferences or through publications in reputable outlets for the field of structure-based drug design.
  • May be involved in the supervision, with guidance, of final year undergraduate research projects and in providing support to postgraduate research students or Research technicians.
  • May contribute to events celebrating the public engagement of science, and patient advocacy events.
  • Develop an awareness of undertaking personal professional development.
  • Protein production and complex formation in a recombinant host system.
  • Biophysical studies involving enzyme kinetics, ligand binding, and protein-protein interaction (ITC, SPR, BLI).
  • Protein-ligand co-structures using x-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy.
  • Analysis of protein-ligand co-structures to design small molecules.

Qualifications
Essential

  • A PhD award within the research area of structural biology or structure guided drug discovery or fragment-based screening for Research Associate.
  • Masters and/or PhD near completion for appointment as Research Assistant.
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