Zymergen is hiring a

Research Associate, Molecular Biology

Emeryville, United States

Zymergen is hiring a Research Associate to develop, optimize and execute workflows for high throughput engineering of microbial genomes (e.g., DNA Build, Strain Build, and/or Sequencing prep) . This role is responsible for improving existing processes and establishing new protocols to deliver against program milestones.  Working in a highly collaborative environment, this role has the opportunity to interact with other scientists, automation engineers, and software engineers to achieve these goals.  This is also an opportunity to impact program success while shaping the microbe engineering platform of the future within a dynamic company. 

Job Description and Specific Responsibilities

Typical  responsibilities will  include:

  • Generating plasmids, strains, and sequencing libraries to meet timelines and deliverables  
  • Building DNA assemblies using cutting edge molecular biology techniques 
  • Using software tools for DNA analysis, construct design, and handling large datasets
  • Genome engineering in a variety of host microbes (e.g., bacteria, yeast, filamentous fungi) using a variety of advanced approaches 
  • Independent problem solving  
  • Developing and optimizing high-throughput protocols for DNA assemblies, strain engineering, and NGS library preparation.
  • Deploying developed technology into our high-throughput microbe engineering production environment
  • Applying a broad range of analytical methods including PCR, DNA electrophoresis, Next-Gen sequencing, spectrophotometry, and other plate-based assays to QC and test engineered strains
  • Assimilating data, presenting results and progress to the project team


We favor candidates with experience designing and executing experiments in the lab: BS or MS with at least 2 years of relevant work experience. We are interested in candidates with technical training in biology, molecular biology, microbiology, genetics, genomics, or related engineering fields. Lastly, we look for candidates that have displayed excellence and high achievement in previous technical and non-technical work.  We prefer candidates with experience in several of the following areas.

Protocols and Equipment:

  • Experience handling and engineering eukaryotic and/or prokaryotic microbes
  • Familiarity with techniques in molecular biology, including: PCR, DNA cloning/assembly, and Next-Gen sequencing
  • Familiarity with utilizing advanced technologies to engineer genomes is preferred
  • Experience using lab automation (Beckman, Tecan, etc.) to enable complex or high-throughput protocols
  • Hands-on experience troubleshooting in the lab
  • Proficiency in the use of equipment such as plate readers and automated DNA electrophoresis systems

Operations and Data Analysis:

  • Experience writing, optimizing, and following complicated SOPs
  • Capability to manage multiple ongoing multi-day workflows, including preparing reagents and materials, and managing implementation
  • Familiarity with concepts in statistics and tools to analyze data such as Excel, JMP, R, Python
  • Previous experience in the field of synthetic biology is a plus

Teamwork and Personality Attributes:

  • Must be committed to fostering an effective team environment, communicating,  and working with others across departments and disciplines
  • Must be able to demonstrate initiative, attention to detail, and providing/adapting to feedback
  • Strong interest in improving and optimizing workflows while continuing to deliver on project milestones


Legal authorization to work in the U.S. is required. We are not able to sponsor individuals for employment visas for this job

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification form upon hire.

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 products made from biology that are used across industries, bring new products to market faster, and develop novel products. 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. For more information visit www.zymergen.com.