To help you get the most out of the content posted on MedChemNet, read our FAQs to learn the basics of medicinal chemistry and the network.

About RxNet

Is RxNet free to join?

Yes – there is no cost to join RxNet and access all the content, including exclusive peer-reviewed journal content and educational webinars. 

Who can post on RxNet?

Anyone who is a 'networker' can post on RxNet. All posts will be moderated after publication by the Editor, Zoe Campbell. If not relevant or inappropriate, the Editor will offer recommendations on how to make the post relevant or appropriate. In extreme cases, such as spam, the post may be deleted and a message sent to the user to explain why. 

How do I post on RxNet?

You can read our comprehensive how-to guide here

Does RxNet post sponsored content?

RxNet sometimes hosts a small number of sponsored posts. Posting sponsored content allows RxNet to provide relevant and timely information from leaders in the field and to operate free for its users. We hope you enjoy the sponsored posts. 

What does RxNet cover?

Up-to-date news, views and research covering the entire drug discovery pipeline, including:

  • Open science in drug discovery
  • Omics technologies
  • Computational chemistry & informatics
  • Biotechnology
  • Drug targeting and delivery
  • Pharmacokinetics & toxicology
  • Preclinical and early phase clinical studies
  • IP and pharmacoeconomics
  • Drug regulation & market analysis
  • Biopharmaceuticals & large molecules including biologics, biosimilars, vaccines, etc.
  • Small molecules & medicinal chemistry
  • Natural products
  • Diagnostic approaches
  • Drug repurposing
  • Target discovery and validation
  • High-throughput screening & assay development
  • Rational drug design
  • Structural biology & biophysics

What does it not cover?

  • Formulations
  • Mid-to-late stage clinical trials
  • Evaluations of drugs already in the clinic
  • Diagnostics (exception being theranostics) 
  • Isolation of natural products (unless tested for some therapeutic purpose)

About drug discovery

What is drug discovery?

Drug discovery is the process by which potential new therapeutics are discovered. Modern drug discovery involves the identification of screening hits, medicinal chemistry, hit-to-lead and lead optimization. 

What is medicinal chemistry?

Medicinal chemistry encompasses the design, optimization, development and synthesis of chemical compounds for use as pharmaceutical drugs. It is inherently a multidisciplinary topic, combining expertise from chemistry and pharmacology to identify, develop and synthesize chemical agents followed by studies investigating their interactions with biological targets to understand and evaluate the medicinal effects of the drug, its metabolism and side-effects.

To summarise as simply as possible, it is the design of small molecules for the potential treatment of a disease. 

What is a medicinal chemist?

A medicinal chemist is a scientist that applies their knowledge of chemistry, biochemistry and physiology to generate solutions to health related problems and design new drugs for treating disease. 

What do medicinal chemists do?

Medicinal chemistry is an encouraging field as it connects many scientific disciplines and enables collaborations with other scientists within novel drug development and research.

Medicinal chemists utilize their chemistry training in the process of synthesizing new pharmaceuticals. Additionally, they enhance the process by which existing pharmaceuticals are made. They are committed to drug discovery and development and are interested with the isolation of medicinal agents discovered in plants, as well as the creation of novel synthetic chemical compounds. A majority of medicinal chemists work within multidiscipline teams including pharmacologists, toxicologists, microbiologist, theoretical chemists, biopharmacists and biologists. Together, this versatile team incorporates sophisticated analytical techniques to synthesize and test new drug products and develop cost- and time-effective means of drug production. 

How to get into medicinal chemistry?

Traditionally medicinal chemists will possess a degree in a chemistry discipline (such as organic chemistry). Individuals with research experience and advanced qualifications (such as MSc and PhD) are more likely to progress into careers as medicinal chemists. A number of universities have medicinal chemistry departments, often associated with other disciplines. Generally, pharmaceutical companies prefer to hire individuals who in addition to the above, also possess at least two years of post-doctoral experience. 

What careers do medicinal chemists typically have?

Many medicinal chemists initially begin their careers in the lab and then move on to other laboratory careers such as process chemistry, formulation chemistry, quality control or quality assurance. Others may also move to non-laboratory careers such as regulatory affairs, intellectual property (patents), project management, or technology transfer. For further information, view our helpful infographic on Where can chemistry take you?

Is your question not included here? Ask the Editor