Scientist - Assay Development

Boston, MA /
Foundry: Test /
Our mission is to make biology easier to engineer. Ginkgo is constructing, editing, and redesigning the living world in order to answer the globe’s growing challenges in health, energy, food, materials, and more. Our bioengineers make use of an in-house automated foundry for designing and building new organisms. Today, our foundry is developing over 40 different organisms to make different products across multiple industries.

Core to our organism engineering pipeline is the testing and analysis of our engineered strains. We leverage high-throughput screens and selections to measure thousands of strains at a time for improved enzyme activity of key steps or increased titers of final products. Given the diversity of projects at Ginkgo, it is essential that your assay development approaches work across multiple hosts and products of interest. If successful, your novel screening and selection methods will lie at the center of our new high-throughput screening pipelines.

Ideally, you have led the development of enzymatic activity screens, microbial phenotypic screens, and/or genetic selections from conception, development, and piloting through to execution. Further, any experience with screens or selections based on next-generation sequencing, biosensors, or clever genetic selections are of high interest.


    • Develop and validate new high-throughput screens and selections for products of interest
    • Apply DOE methods to reduce assay CV and increase reproducibility
    • Scale assays to work on >10,000 strains per week via software and automation
    • Analyze large-scale experimental datasets and communicate screening results effectively with product teams and customers as necessary
    • Collaborate with software engineers to ensure that all data is captured, stored, and analyzed in Ginkgo's LIMS

Desired Experience and Capabilities

    • PhD in biology, biochemistry, bioengineering, chemistry, chemical engineering, or equivalent; OR BS with equivalent experience
    • Demonstrated ability to develop novel assays and optimize conditions to reduce variability
    • Enzymology experience a plus
    • Familiarity with software, programming, and/or laboratory automation a plus
    • Familiarity with diverse microbes, including plant-associated microbes, a plus
To learn more about Ginkgo, check out some recent press:
Ginkgo, a Boston biotech venture, is a magnet for VC money (Boston Globe)
The Life Factory: Synthetic Organisms From This $1.4 Billion Startup Will Revolutionize Manufacturing (Forbes)
The engineering of living organisms could soon start changing everything (The Economist)
Synthetic Bio Pioneer Ginkgo Raises $290 Million in New Funding (Bloomberg)
Ginkgo Bioworks raises $350 million fund for biotech spinouts (Reuters)
Ginkgo Bioworks Is Turning Human Cells into On-Demand Factories (WIRED)
Can This Company Convince You to Love GMOs? (The Atlantic)
This food tech startup just raised $90 million to make it easier to invent new plant-based meats (Fast Company)

We also feel it’s important to point out the obvious here – there’s a serious lack of diversity in our industry and it needs to change. Our goal is to help drive that change. Ginkgo is deeply committed to diversity, equality, and inclusion in all of its practices, especially when it comes to growing our team. We hope to continue to build a company whose culture promotes inclusion and embraces how rewarding it is to work with engineers from all walks of life. Making biology easier to engineer is a tough nut to crack – we can’t afford to leave any talent untapped.

It is the policy of Ginkgo Bioworks to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and employment applicants.