Senior Software Engineer ~ Python

Emeryville, California
Mar 02, 2018
Required Education
Bachelors Degree
Position Type
Full time

We are searching for a talented, curious, and self-motivated engineer to join our software engineering team in building the most advanced production-scale synthetic biology platform on the planet. R&D at Amyris is a highly multidisciplinary effort, where we need brilliant contributions from every area of the life sciences and engineering disciplines in order to take projects from concept to market.

From hacking directly on DNA in the lab to full scale factory production, every aspect of our work is facilitated and accelerated by software and hardware automation. Our tools integrate the activities of scientists, engineers, and industrial robots to enable the rapid optimization of genetic designs and laboratory processes.

The position reports to our Director of Software Engineering and Computational Science.  She is the project lead on the Automated Scientist, part of a $35MM DARPA-funded program to scale the production of hundreds of small molecules from milligrams to kilograms using data science, next-gen phenotyping, advanced genome editing, and industrial fermentation. Also the group lead for Bioinformatics & Software Engineering, whose work includes innovations in genotype representation and data visualization, building mechanistic & empirical models to analyse high-throughput, multivariate phenotype, NGS, and ‘omics data; metabolic modeling to identify biochemical pathway bottlenecks; and workflow modeling with statistical process control to rapidly drive the design-build-test-learn cycle. 

Among the tools we have developed are a CAD/CAM system for genetic engineering: a compiler toolchain whose target architecture is life itself. This stack physically integrates high level genetic modules into microbial hosts. We also derive novel strains through random mutagenesis and directed evolution. Using our custom control platform, we then subject these experimental organisms to high throughput performance screening in our state-of-the-art robot labs.

If you want to work with brilliant scientists and engineers to help create a better future for ourselves, our children, and everyone on the planet? Have you ever wished you could have gotten in on the ground floor at the dawn of the integrated circuit revolution? This is your chance to do foundational work in biotechnology. We are past proof of principle; we have begun the rapid expansion of a technology that will characterize this century. We're doing something far more interesting and exciting than almost anyone else out there, and we offer competitive compensation, excellent benefits, unlimited high-quality conversation, free lunches, and beer! Please join us.

* Design, develop and maintain web based application written in Python.
* Collaborate with scientists to transform an understanding of their workflow into designs and implementations of appropriate data models and user interfaces.
* Effectively communicate with research scientists.
* Apply best practices of software development throughout your work, while staying abreast of advances in the practice.
* Mentor junior staff members.

* 5+ years of professional programming experience.
* Strong coding skills in either Python or a similar language. Ideally deep experience in multiple languages. In addition to Python, Amyris has codebases in F#, R and PHP (phasing out, but still have some important legacy code).
* Experience with full-stack web application development, including coding skills in Javascript, CSS and HTML. Relational database design and coding experience.  We use PostgreSQL and SQL Server, though we also treat plasmids and chromosomes as datastores.
* Experience developing software in a Unix environment.  Dev tools are chosen at the developer’s discretion, but most of the software development and all production deployment is on Linux (Ubuntu).
* Fluent Linux command-line skills.

Amyris, a leader in industrial synthetic biology, uses its innovative bioscience solutions to achieve renewable products by converting plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules. Amyris’ molecules are used in wide range of specialty & performance chemicals, flavors & fragrances and in applications ranging from cosmetics to biofuels. Learn more at

As a VEVRAA Federal Contractor, Amyris is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, sex, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. Amyris complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.

For a full list of our current openings, please visit our website