RA, Microbe Screening - Emeryville, CA | Biospace
Get Our FREE Industry eNewsletter

RA, Microbe Screening


Emeryville, CA
Posted Date:
Position Type:
Full time
Job Code:
Required Education:
Bachelors Degree
Areas of Expertise Desired:
Associate, Chemical Engineering, Engineering, Research,

Job Description

Founded in 2013 and based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Zymergen is a technology company unlocking the power of biology. We deliver better economics for bio-derived products across industries and research novel product opportunities. Our proprietary platform uses robots and machine learning to engineer microbes faster, more predictably, and to a level of performance previously unattainable. These microbes, and the products they produce, have broad applications across industries such as chemicals and materials, agriculture, and healthcare.

Zymergen is hiring Research Associates into its Operations team to collect and analyze strain performance measurements at a scale of tens of thousands per month. Although the Associate must be able to get the right materials into the right places at the right times, they must also be tool builders who collaborate with our automation, molecular biology, software engineering and data analytics teams to make continuous improvements to measurement quality and efficiency. The Associate will be encouraged to build statistical models and to translate them into mechanistic insights to understand the interface between a microbe and its environment.

Immediate responsibilities include:
•   Managing parallel workflows that have been automated to varying degrees
•   Preparing biological samples and chemical standards for analysis
•   Loading and unloading shakers and automation decks
•   Working with data capture systems to store data and metadata about the experiments
•   Using data analysis tools to explain process variation to identify microbes with improved performance


The Operations team within the company is integral to the construction and screening of large libraries of microbes every week. We need members of the Operations team to be thoughtful, meticulous, well-organized, energetic, collaborative, and fully engaged in the execution of the workflows. In addition, we need team members to be fully committed to the improvement of the workflows through better techniques, more efficient processes, or entirely new approaches. Early hires to the team will shape the technical and cultural aspects of the team and establish best practices within a growing company.

We favor candidates with a background in chemical engineering, biophysics or other quantitative disciplines (BS/BA preferred). We welcome candidates who are energized by performing the hard work of getting the right materials into the right places at the right times.

We prefer Associates with experience in some or all of the following areas.

Protocols and Equipment:

•   Responsible for preparing chemical solutions and maintaining batch records
•   Responsible for cultivating microorganisms as shaking cultures and on agar plates
•   Experience using lab automation (Beckman, Tecan, etc.) to enable complicated or high-throughput protocols

Operations and Data Analysis:

•   Experience following complicated SOPs
•   Capability to manage multiple ongoing multi day workflows, including scheduling instrumentation, preparing reagents and materials, and managing implementation
•   Familiarity with statistical concepts, analytical software such as JMP, Spotfire or Tableau, and manufacturing principles such as 5S, Lean, GMP or GLP
•   Facility with Microsoft Excel a plus
Previous experience in the field of synthetic biology is not essential.

Our facility is located in Emeryville, CA in the San Francisco Bay Area.