Senior Scientist, Metabolic Engineering


About Debut

Debut is the unconventional innovation lab spearheading the next generation of big business. Only Debut has a scalable, integrated, climate-positive creation model powered by biotechnology that puts human wellbeing at the center of everything we do—setting the new standard for profitable business and a new pace for an ever-changing world.  Our hybrid biotechnology approaches unlock latent markets, providing access to sustainably produced, natural ingredients with health benefits that cannot be obtained through other methods. We are committed to traversing the entire process, from ingredient discovery to the scaling of these products, for consumer markets. If you are passionate, enjoy fast-paced innovation and collaborative teams, then Debut is for you.  

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

Job Type: Full-time

Salary: $110,000.00 - $140,000.00 per year


  • 401(k)
  • 401(k) matching
  • Dental insurance
  • Flexible schedule
  • Flexible spending account
  • Health insurance
  • Health savings account
  • Life insurance
  • Paid time off
  • Parental leave
  • Referral program
  • Relocation assistance
  • Vision insurance

Supplemental pay types:

  • Bonus pay


  • Master's (Preferred)

Work Location: One location

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