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Senior Scientist or Scientist II, Metabolic Engineering

Debut is a San Diego based company leading the biomanufacturing revolution for a cleaner and healthier world. Our platform technology development focuses on researching and producing the next generation of natural ingredients and functional molecules. We offer a fast-paced, exciting environment where our people contribute at all levels toward the company’s success.

As a Senior Scientist in Metabolic Engineering your focus will be on pathway optimization and strain improvement ensuring completion of projects with strict time deadlines. You will help lead a team of seven scientists to meet the needs of Debut’s strain engineering and your responsibilities will include:

  • Engineering metabolic pathways and performing genomic editing using CRISPR/Cas9 systems
  • Developing medium-to-high throughput strain construction to rapidly improve bioproduction of target molecules
  • Designing, setting up, executing, and documenting metabolic engineering experiments. Working with peers and management to define pertinent experiments, develop protocols, collect, and analyze resultant data within agreed timelines
  • Coaching junior staff and problem solving with them to ensure progress across multiple deadlines
  • Writing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for internal use
  • Project management and tracking strain building and testing
  • Collaborating with fermentation and product purification processes to ensure work products are delivered on time and at spec
  • Functioning as the point person for a project and processing data for subsequent review and reporting.
  • Managing the strain engineering workflow and ensuring on time delivery


  • PhD with 8+ years of experience in metabolic engineering, synthetic biology, or a related field
  • Proficient and thoughtful in designing and performing CRISPR-based genomic editing
  • Deep knowledge in the central metabolism of E. coli and optimization of metabolic pathways
  • Must have experience with metabolic engineering in E. coli with a proven track record of creating commercial strains
  • Experience working with other organisms is highly desirable
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving abilities with a proven track record of being innovative and generating key breakthroughs to advance cell lines.
  • Has lead campaigns from conception to pilot production for small molecules
  • Experienced in BLAST search, sequence alignment, and phylogenetic trees
  • Familiar with Geneious, MindManger, and Smartsheet
  • Must possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills to facilitate interactions with a highly interdisciplinary team
  • Motivated by a sense of urgency, attention to detail, and an engrained penchant for professional development of themselves and their co-workers
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills including managing projects simultaneously
  • Excellent attention to details and diligent adherence to deadlines and deliverables
  • Ability to prioritize responsibilities and multi-task
  • Must be motivated, self-directed, and work well with little oversight
  • Ability to learn quickly in a fast-paced startup environment
  • Must be willing to work non-standard hours supporting a 24/7 operation including weekends

To learn more about Debut please see:

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):

Debut Biotech Awarded $1M from Air Force Research Lab for aerospace applications of cell-free biomanufacturing (PRWeb):

Our website:


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