Director, Drug Discovery


Reporting to the Vice President, Scientific Operations, the Director of Drug Discovery will be responsible for leading drug discovery programs by providing a strong knowledge base of GPCR biology and GPCR-mediated diseases and identifying and executing appropriate in vitro and in vivo assays to support the programs.  The candidate will independently lead research efforts that support target validation, compound characterization and/or pharmacology as well as contributing both strategically and scientifically to project teams. This role will identify appropriate academic/government collaborators or contract research organizations (CRO) to perform studies on Trevena’s behalf. The Director of Drug Discovery will finalize study reports and prepare study summaries for inclusion in regulatory documents (IND, investigator’s brochure, annual report, NDA, etc.). 

Specifically, the Director of Drug Discovery will:

  1. Use strong scientific skills and background to independently plan and execute on drug discovery activities.
  2. Possess a broad knowledge of neuropharmacology and relevant therapeutic targets in the current scientific literature.
  3. Possess strong knowledge of GPCR biology and various GPCR-mediated diseases, including neuropathic pain.
  4. Oversee the design and execution of in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo assays required to advance compounds through discovery into development.
  5. Manage external collaborations and oversee outsourced studies.
  6. Interpret experimental results and solve technical problems.
  7. Actively challenge the scientific thinking at Trevena by presenting new research, technologies, potential targets, and areas of research.
  8. Establish and foster professional relationships with KOLs and academic institutions.
  9. Cultivate scientific culture and generate ideas for new drug discovery programs.
  10. Prepare slide decks and write study summaries for internal and external communications, including regulatory submissions.
  11. Provide scientific expertise to project teams and to partnering/diligence discussions.
  12. Raise and clearly communicate critical issues and their impact to the appropriate stakeholders in a manner that results in resolution and allows others to do the same.
  13. Observes all Trevena policies, SOPs and safety guidelines.
  14. Other duties, as necessary.


Up to 10% domestic/international travel.


  1. PhD in biological sciences with 10 years of postdoctoral and industry experience or MS in biological sciences with 15 years of industry experience in drug discovery research and/or development.
  2. Experience developing drugs that target the central nervous system preferred.


  1. Experience developing novel CNS therapeutics, from drug discovery through clinical development.
  2. Ability to independently design and execute research project activities.
  3. Demonstrated project leadership experience in biotechnology/pharmaceutical industry.
  4. Understanding of good laboratory practice (GLP) and the nonclinical development process.
  5. Ability to identify and engage KOL’s in multiple scientific/disease indications.
  6. Experience managing nonclinical activities through academic collaborations and utilization of contract research organizations (CROs).
  7. Ability to effectively manage an external nonclinical team with high attention to details, completing work within approved budgets and timelines.
  8. Demonstrated ability to independently solve problems in a rapidly changing environment.
  9. Experience identifying and interacting with drug development consultants.
  10. Proven track record of successful regulatory filings.
  11. Experience with interdisciplinary development teams.
  12. Communicate data and results clearly and concisely utilizing strong writing and presentation skills.
  13. Ability to inspire others to collaborate effectively.

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Accepted formats: PDF, Word Doc

Accepted formats: PDF, Word Doc