July 2011

The key to success: Believe in yourself

Having worked with GPCRs during my graduate studies and through my first postdoc, I know how tough these receptors are to deal with. To transform a GPCR project into a success story is my dream. These receptors are the broadest target in the pharmaceutical industry. More than 50 percent of the currently available prescription drugs target GPCRs, making them the most sought-after drug class.

One of the things that I love best about working at Lucigen is the chance to participate in innovative and exploratory research projects, marketing efforts and business development. Being a small company, we are a well-built, cohesive family – all working together to do good science and deliver novel products to the scientific community (and in turn bringing in more value for what we do).

Saurabh Sen’s mathematical formula for describing his personality traits.

ASBMB: Are you still involved in bench work?  
Sen: Of course. I love the bench. People have different opinions about the industrial environment and how research programs are operated in an industrial setting. I devote a significant fraction of my time to cutting-edge experiments at the bench. It’s fun, and that’s what keeps me going.

ASBMB: Was your transition from academia to industry easy?  
Sen: Well, for me it was rather smooth sailing. I had a little bit of industrial experience (nine months) before my graduate studies, and that sort of laid down the foundation for me to come back to industry again. I did not find any significant challenges or hurdles that acted as barriers to my transition. Many people find it difficult to adapt to industry coming from academia, and I believe it is more the mindset that plays a crucial role in the process. One thing is for certain – in an industrial setting, an individual doesn’t have the luxury to do much offshoot exploratory research; the focus mainly lies on the corporate goals and milestones that need to be achieved annually. If you are ready to embrace that, I don’t see any problems with the transition.

ASBMB: Can you describe a typical day at work? 
Sen: For me, a typical day at work involves thorough execution of my planned agendas, and, as always, I am ready to take up new challenges. It includes checking my e-mails and calendar when I arrive at work, looking for any meetings that I may have during the day and planning experiments accordingly. Completion of my planned experiments, data analysis, updating my notebook and planning the next day’s experiment generally is what I strive to accomplish by the end of the day. Coming to work every morning with the challenge of discovering a novel solution for an unsolved scientific problem keeps me on my toes for the whole day.


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Dr. Sen, Congrats on this endeavor and your success!! I have personally worked with Dr. Sen in Univ of Alabama and can say he has the personality and team environment skills that has likely been a strong driving force for his success - as seen here. It helps and encourages me to read this report of his personal insights, and to know the interactions I have experienced that has panned out in personal success for him! Great and personal report of pursuing career through web-based platforms and yet being authentic and genuine to self! -Trent


Dr Sen's work in GPRC is well acclaimed in the field. His interview provides real guidance in true sense for all those postdoc and other academic scientists who are in dilemma and confusion about career choice. Most of the academics are sort of afraid of company set up but this interview clears lots of mind blocks in opting industrial set up as a nice career options. Congratulations for good work and good luck! Piyush, St Louis



I do believe that believing in yourself is one of the best way to be successfull. To do every work religiously is thkey of success. Being an eardent follower of aparticular algorithm of every day routine of works as followed by you is astonishing. As you proceed further to invent an exelent formulae to serve the living embodyment to survive the dangerous deseases as are coming will give all of us a great relief. Pijush kanti Guha Kolkata India


Dr. Sen seems very articulate and concise not ot mention goal oriented. This interview displays all of the above qualities. It would be wise for other web based job seekers to heed his advice. WEll done! Bobbi Merchant



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