Associate Director, Early Stage Drug Substance Development

Arena Pharmaceuticals San Diego , CA 92140

Posted 2 weeks ago

This is an exciting time to join Arena Pharmaceuticals, a clinical stage biotechnology pharmaceutical company with a robust portfolio of assets across multiple therapeutic areas.

Arena's Technical Operations group is responsible for all drug substance and drug product development, including early stage chemistry activities. The Associate Director, Early Stage Drug Substance Development is a high visibility, hands-on role within the company reporting directly to the Head of Early Stage Drug Substance Development.

The role affords considerable opportunity to drive multiple medicinal chemistry and early process development efforts in conjunction with external collaborators/contract research organizations, and to participate in or lead multidisciplinary project teams. Working on projects spanning the entire pharmaceutical development spectrum, with a focus on development of discovery-stage assets, this role will be key in a corporate environment that is committed to developing and delivering novel, high quality pharmaceutical products to patients in need of safe and effective treatment options in a wide range of clinical indications.

What you'll dive into

  • Lead medicinal chemistry efforts including library design and lead optimization consistent with a target candidate profile to complement Arena's portfolio of medicinal drugs.

  • Evaluate solid state characteristics and scalability to assist in the selection of exploratory development candidates.

  • Liaise with internal and external groups to ensure timelines and IND-enabling activities are on track.

  • Author requests for proposals, lead vendor selection and engagement activities, and drive vendor management processes.

  • Prepare detailed scientific reports to document discovery and early stage drug substance development activities to support internal and external technical transfer.

  • Assist in route scouting and route optimization efforts.

  • Support drug substance activities from early discovery to GLP toxicology through IND filing by efficient planning and maintenance of inventory and distribution of API.

  • Assist in writing drug substance sections for regulatory filings, including IND or IMPD.

  • Track proposals and invoices to ensure alignment with approved Technical Operations budgets.

  • Manage consultants, vendors, and CROs/CMOs to meet aggressive program timelines and budgets.

  • Remain flexible to assume other responsibilities as needed.

What we expect

  • MS or PhD degree in chemistry with 8+ or 5+ years of hands-on synthetic, medicinal chemistry and scale-up experience with increasing responsibility in biopharmaceutical discovery and development.

  • Successful track record in designing and selecting small molecules for pharmaceutical development and oversight of activities leading to IND filings.

  • Experience in writing/assisting with scientific documents for tech transfers and regulatory submissions.

  • Hands-on working experience with drug substance development, as well as in-depth knowledge and understanding of small molecule requirements as medicinal drug candidates.

  • Experience working with contract service providers (CROs/CMOs).

  • Demonstrated flexibility within a high-paced, changing environment.

  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to work in a goal and team-oriented setting

  • Well-developed organizational skills with the ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously and thrive under pressure.

What you'll get

  • To be a part a growing company and fantastic team passionate about developing novel drug therapies to improve people's lives

  • Opportunities to learn and contribute creative solutions

  • Comprehensive health insurance

  • Matching 401k retirement plan

  • Paid time off and holidays

  • Company celebrations

Arena celebrates and supports our differences and is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Workplace. We do not discriminate based upon race, religion, color, national origin, gender (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, status as a protected veteran, status as an individual with a disability, or other applicable legally protected characteristics. Arena is committed to providing reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities and disabled veterans in our job application procedures. If you need assistance due to a disability, you may contact us at

By submitting a resume for consideration, applicants verify that they have read Arena's Applicant Personal Information Privacy Notice.

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Associate Director, Early Stage Drug Substance Development

Arena Pharmaceuticals