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Scientist: Biocatalysis

Debut Biotech is a high-growth company located in sunny San Diego, CA. At the heart of our ethos is the ability of synthetic biology to create over 60% of the material inputs for society to provide a sustainable future. While many have attempted to achieve this goal using traditional fermentation, no platform can convert low-cost renewable feedstocks into ANY material; our advanced biomanufacturing platform will be the first. At Debut, we promise that your day-to-day innovation will drive us closer to realizing this critical vision and that failure is OK when shooting for the stars; if you’re not failing, you’re not pushing hard enough. We genuinely believe that Debut will be THE biomanufacturing company and the vision for a better tomorrow motivates our team. If you are passionate, like fast-paced innovation and close-knit teams, then Debut is for you.

Debut Biotech is hiring a full-time Scientist for our rapidly growing team. As a member of the Cell-Free team, you will work closely with other Scientists and Research Associates to advance our platform. You will build a protein expression, purification and assay pipeline to test new enzymes for a novel product pathway. Proteins are critical to our Cell-Free work, and we are always trying to understand the optimal activity and conditions to improve enzyme performance. You will have the opportunity to expand your technical skill set and communication skills while working on cutting-edge core technology on this team.

We are looking for candidates with a sense of urgency, contagious optimism, and a can-do attitude. They must lead by example and hold themselves and others accountable while maintaining productive and professional relationships within the team.

Primary responsibilities are as follows:

• Developing enzyme-based biosynthesis protocols for specialty chemical production. Experience in enzyme catalysis is a must.
• Developing protein expression and purification conditions for a wide range of challenging products.
• Work closely with our Enzyme Discovery team to identify and improve pathway enzymes
• Performing column purification/chromatography, SDS-PAGE analysis, Western blotting, and other protein characterization techniques.
• Development and optimization of enzyme immobilization procedures, and the corresponding validation of product function.
• Characterization of biosynthetic products using HPLC/LCMS or GCMS.
• Leading troubleshooting efforts for protein expression and purification processes.
• Writing technical documents which include standard operating procedures and manufacturing records.

Preferred qualifications:

• A Master’s degree in Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry or other related disciplines with 3+ years, or a PhD in Biology, Chemistry, or Biochemistry or other related disciplines.
• The ability to develop and perform high-throughput assays.
• Experience in using typical analysis equipment such plate readers, HPLC, LCMS, and GCMS is highly desired.
• Strong collaborative skills and ability to excel in a fast-paced environment


  • Employment is subject to a criminal background check.
  • Must be willing to work with biohazardous agents (up to BSL2).
  • Work requires sufficient hand, arm, and finger dexterity to operate computer keyboard and office equipment. Laboratory operations require dexterity and care to perform studies as required.
  • The R&D laboratory will result in exposure to hot and cold temperatures, noise, fumes, limited dust, and oily coolants.
  • Requires walking, climbing stairs, bending and occasional lifting of material up to fifty (50) pounds.
  • The performance of this position will present exposure to an industrial environment and requires support and compliance with the published Company PPE policy including but not limited to the use of personal protective equipment such as safety glasses with side shields, appropriate attire, safety shoes, hard hat, hearing protection, etc.
  • Debut Biotech is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran, or disability status.


  • 6% Matched 401K program
  • Dental, health, and vision insurance
  • 20 Days PTO
  • Stock options
  • Flexible schedule
  • Maternity and paternity leave

To learn more about Debut please see: 

DIC, Debut Biotech Team Up to Develop and Bio-Manufacture Natural Pigments for More Sustainable Food Colorants and Cosmetics:

DSM Agrees to Evaluate Debut’s Scalable Cell-Free Manufacturing Platform (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News):

Next gen cell-free biomanufacturing could unlock opportunities to synthesize natural ingredients (Food Navigator-USA):


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