For small molecules, Chemistry governs both ‘what the drug does to the body’ and ‘what the body does to the drug’. This course brings your chemistry knowledge to life in the context of small molecule drug design, how organic and physical chemistry influence molecular interactions and what considerations are applied to chemical structure in order to optimise potency, selectivity and ADME. Course content includes:

  • Molecular Structure

  • Molecular Interactions

  • Physical Chemistry

  • Drug Reactivity and Metabolism

  • Molecular interactions with ADME

  • Molecular Interactions with Pharmacological Targets

  • Hit ID strategies

  • Hit to Lead strategies

Intended audience:
This course is intended for DMPK scientists who interface with drug discovery projects and wish to learn more about the essential chemistry concepts influencing small molecule drug design. An prior understanding of core chemistry concepts is preferable (e.g., types of chemical bonding, chirality, valency (for bonding), basic thermodynamic properties such as enthalpy and entropy).

The course is delivered in a face to face, residential style format over 3 days. Designed as an interactive course, content is delivered using a combination of lectures and interactive tutorials.

Consistent with the DMDG core principles, the interactions and networking between delegates and with tutors is encouraged at all times including opportunities to connect at coffee breaks and at dinner each evening.

The course runs every 2 years for a maximum of 45 delegates.

In 2023, this course will be delivered from our DMDG training base at Burleigh Court, Loughborough, UK.


  • Sharan Bagal (AstraZeneca)
  • Tim Barrett (GSK)
  • Kevin Beaumont (AstraZeneca)
  • Steve Clifton (Charles River)
  • Iain Martin (Relay Therapeutics)
  • Scott Summerfield – Course Leader (Pharmaron)
  • Beth Williamson (UCB)