Drug design and selection

Female scientist in a lab

Program overview

It’s a three year program within Protein, cellular and structural sciences (PCSS), part of Drug design and selection (DDS).

Drug design and selection (DDS) supports the therapeutic areas within GSK contributing to the discovery of new medicines through the collaborative identification of disease-linked targets and the selection of molecules for future drug development. We are responsible for delivering scientific expertise and specific platform capabilities to ensure that GSK is able to deliver the best potential medicines.

This role is UK-based and sits within Protein, cellular and structural sciences, a line within DDS that designs, generates and validates biological reagents for early discovery activities across different disease indications using a wide variety of technologies; including molecular biology, modular expression systems, protein biochemistry, and cellular engineering.

In addition to providing quality biological reagents to enable lead discovery, we are building capabilities to deliver novel human disease relevant platforms to downstream discovery efforts that will ultimately improve our understanding of the role of the biological target, domain and pathway.

This demands cellular platforms with greater flexibility and higher throughput for the delivery of a wide range of complex reagent modalities across multiple therapeutic areas.

What do we look for in a candidate?

  • An innovative mind and the ability to solve problems
  • It’s important that you can adapt to change and keep focused when the pressure is on
  • An ability to assimilate information and prioritise even outside your area of expertise
  • Desire to interact with different parts of the business
  • A team player who actively collaborates with others
  • Ability to interpret information and a passion for developing medicines
  • Interest in Cell Biology and Biological Sciences 
  • An MSc (2:1 or better) or PhD in cell biology, biochemistry, biophysics, bioengineering, or a related subject 

What you will do 

  • Contribute to the design, development and implementation of transformational technologies with a goal of discovering novel therapeutics
  • Contribute to the development of innovative complex human cellular model systems; including induced pluripotent stem cell technology and genome editing strategies to support progression of portfolio assets
  • Seek and interact with external and internal expert and stakeholders to evaluate, implement and industrialise novel 3D models and organoid culture platforms aligned across therapeutic areas
  • Apply a wide range of downstream methods to enable validation of cellular models to include flow cytometry, next generation sequencing, confocal microscopy, digital droplet PCR, RNA sequencing, single cell biology
  • Contribute and take a role in defining strategy and success in this area
  • Deliver high quality data to enable early decision making for target and compound progression

The stages/ rotations

Three rotations within the DDS function. Rotations are chosen to meet the needs of the business and the developing aspirations of the graduate.

You will be part of a vibrant, global scientific community, you’ll work in teams that combine a mix of disciplines.  You’ll contribute to multidisciplinary teams that deliver therapeutic strategies to address specific disease areas.  You’ll never be far from an expert who can help you to learn, grow and contribute to our business, and you’ll be coached and mentored to become a technical leader of the future.

What happens next

As this is a new role at GSK we are excited to work with our graduates to tailor and influence the direction of the programme.  Our graduates will offboard in roles where they are working to ensure that we are able to deliver the best potential medicines, for development.


This programme is based at our site in Stevenage. 

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